16,000 Internet Retailers Flouting The Law. Research Findings from UK Internet Watchdog SafeBuy

Research conducted by Internet retailing watchdog SafeBuy has revealed that Internet retailing is something of a ‘Wild West’ with massive numbers of retailers flouting the law.

Announcing the research, Richard Jones, founder and CEO of SafeBuy and the UK’s leading expert on web retailing websites said, “a shocking one quarter (25 per cent) of the small and medium enterprises (SMEs) surveyed were found to be committing breaches of legal requirements for online trading.

“These included flouting the most basic requirements that every Internet retailer should be aware of and should comply with. For example, displaying a proper geographic address, a contact phone number and an email address. Plus having a legally-compliant goods returns policy.”

SafeBuy was set up in 2003 following the closure of the ‘Which? Web Trader Scheme’. It provides consumer confidence by producing and policing a comprehensive Code of Best Practice for the UK’s Internet retailing sector. SafeBuy assesses websites for compliance with this code of practice and with relevant UK and EU trading laws. Websites which pass the accreditation are able to display the SafeBuy Consumer Care confidence mark on their website.

SafeBuy also operates a comprehensive web retailer star rating scheme (accessed via the SafeBuy Stars logo on appropriate sites) which is moderated and cannot be influenced or ‘fixed’ by the retailers and thus gives a highly accurate consumer rating of that retailer.

To back up the Code of Practice, the organisation operates a Mediation Service, which has brought satisfactory outcomes to almost 2,500 consumers who had complaints against internet retailers. This service is completely free to consumers in relation to SafeBuy-accredited retailers.

Said SafeBuy CEO Richard Jones, “All of SafeBuy’s services are designed to give consumers confidence and safety in their online shopping. Whenever they see the SafeBuy logo displayed by an online retailer they can be confident that it is a good, law abiding, retailer to do business with.”

The research reviewed 225 random SME websites that are not accredited by SafeBuy. The research found that:
• Seven per cent did not advise the customer before paying that they have a legal “right of return” if they change their mind after ordering.
• Six per cent did not provide a geographic address where they conduct their business from. This is a legal requirement.
• An astounding twenty per cent did not publish a contact e-mail address. The frequently used ‘contact us form’ is not an alternative. On this matter the law is unequivocal, stating: ‘… the details of the service provider, including his electronic mail address, which makes it possible to contact him rapidly… must be displayed’.

Commenting on the findings, Jones said, “there are an estimated 65,000 UK online retailing sites that are not yet accredited by SafeBuy. Extrapolating the research findings could mean some 16,250 of those websites are not complying with the law.

“One highly unacceptable finding of the research”, he continued, “was the number of websites which attempt to prevent consumers from being aware of their legal rights. A significant number of websites went to shocking lengths to prevent consumers exercising their legal right of return. We found many examples like these:
‘We will use our discretion in deciding whether to accept a return.’
‘If you open the packaging you can’t return the products.’
“If you’ve tested the product… you’ll have to pay us a fee.’
But the research team’s absolute favourite was:
‘Returns must be in perfect condition.’
which to our minds at SafeBuy tries to rule out sending back any faulty or damaged-in-transit goods. These statements are all most clearly illegal!”

Does your website break the law? A checklist
SafeBuy’s mission is to make a web shopping as safe as possible for consumers – so here is a 10-point checklist for web retailers and consumers:
1. Does the website display the consumer’s rights to return unwanted goods. And is there a clear ‘How To Return’ section?
2. Does the website clearly display a geographic address, contact email and phone number – not just a ‘contact us’ form?
3. Is the method and cost of delivery clearly indicated before the order is placed?
4. Is the security level for each online payment option clearly shown?
5. Does the website tell the consumer how to lodge a complaint and what the complaint procedure is?
6. Does the website clearly show the contract terms – including guarantees and warranties? And does it clearly state that these do not affect the consumer’s statutory rights?
7. Does the site clearly state that all the consumer’s data will be kept private in accordance with the Data Protection Act 1998 and the EC Communications Directive 2003?
8. Does the website state that the retailer adheres to the terms of the UK Sale of Goods Act and the EU Distance Selling Regulations?
9. Are phone numbers on the website for queries relating to an order charged at no more than the normal UK inland rate? If technical support lines are charged at a premium rate is this clearly stated?
10. Does the site display the SafeBuy accreditation logo to give consumers absolute confidence that all of these factors and many more have been independently verified?

Web retailers and consumers can read the SafeBuy code of practice (from which these 10 points are taken) for Internet retailing at safebuy.org.uk

How traders can ensure compliance
Web retailers who wants to be sure they comply with law and the code of practice for internet retailing should contact SafeBuy and go through the accreditation process which, once they are fully compliant, will permit them to display the SafeBuy consumer confidence logo on their website. For details go to safebuy.org.uk

People Power needed
In conclusion, SafeBuy’s Jones said, “This situation with potentially over 16,000 internet retailers contravening the law is frankly outrageous. We knew that there were ‘dodgy traders’ out there but this number of online retailers breaking the law is patently unacceptable. What we now need is ‘People Power’ based on consumers educating themselves on their rights and taking retailers to task.

“To help everybody we’ve published a free quick 5-point checklist for consumers at http://care.safebuy.org.uk/ and a much more comprehensive free 8-point checklist for retailers with loads more information to help them in both legal and marketing terms also at safebuy.org.uk

“If a web retailer is not a subscriber to the SafeBuy accreditation scheme consumers should challenge them as to why they are not. And if you have a problem with them go straight to your Citizens Advice Bureau or use the cheap and easy Small Claims Court process to get satisfaction.”

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Additional background:

• SafeBuy is not a trade association – it is an independent standards body.
• Started in 2003 after Which? closed its WebTrader scheme.
• Initiated work with the OFT in 2006 under the Enterprise Act of Parliament to define a general Code of Practice for web retailers.
• OFT-agreed text for Code-of-Conduct first released in 2007.
• Focused entirely on SMEs – big names (Tesco, M&S) will trade on their own reputation.
• Mediated on almost 2,500 consumer complaints against Code-approved retailers over seven years – out of 28 million transactions; 98% success rate with over 500 emails of consumer thanks.
• SafeBuy ‘Stars’ released in 2012 as the most comprehensive consumer review system in the UK on web retailers.
• The founder and CEO, Richard Jones, appointed ‘UK Leading Expert’ in 2011 by BSI to work with ISO on the world standard (ISO10008) for web retailing.
• It is a matter of record that web retailing in the UK leads the world and SafeBuy leads the UK in defining the standards for, and measuring the performance of, web retailers.

SafeBuy – www.safebuy.org.uk – operates as an independent organisation with its only funding coming from subscribers to its Code of Practice who are retailing on the web. The founder, Richard Jones, came from a background as editor of The Good Software Guide from 1987 to 2002. The Guide’s defining principle was to review PC software with no payments or commissions or advertising from any software makers. Its revenue came from subscribers – mostly corporates and the public sector – including online to all higher education in the UK via the Joint Academic Network.

Whilst editing the Guide, Richard Jones also was a freelance columnist for the Daily Telegraph on software and in 1999 was lead writer and editor for the Sunday Times on the 800-page Millennium Bug Report with a foreword by the Prime Minister, Tony Blair,

Following this principle of completely unbiased reviews and with a passion for informing users of the truth about hundreds of software products it became apparent in 2001 that with the closure of the Which? Webtrader scheme there was no independent research house in the UK setting standards and evaluating web retailers. Hence SafeBuy was born in 2003.

It should be noted that SafeBuy is not a trade association and does not represent its subscribers to anybody. It is an impartial operation setting web retailing standards, recognising effective operations and mediating on disputed issues between consumers and retailers.

In 2010 Richard Jones was appointed by the British Standards Institute to be ‘UK Leading Expert’ representing the BSI on the International Standards Organisation’s working group developing ISO 10008 – the world standard for ecommerce websites, released in 2013.

SafeBuy has three core elements – 1) a comprehensive Code of Practice; 2) a Star Rating scheme for web retailers; and 3) a no-charge mediation operation for dissatisfied consumers.

The Code of Practice
With support from the Department of Trade and Industry in 2003 the SafeBuy Code of Practice was developed, the text of which subsequently became agreed with the Office of Fair Trading (OFT) in 2006 under stage one of the Consumer Codes Approval Scheme (CCAS) authorised by Act of Parliament. See http://care.safebuy.org.uk/code-of-practice/

The CCAS was designed to make buying and selling better for everyone. It helped consumers choose businesses that promised to provide a higher standard of customer service than required by law, including better protection in the event that something goes wrong.

In 2014 SafeBuy has the only comprehensive Code of Practice for the web retailing industry in the UK and remains the only organisation which has worked with the OFT to develop an appropriate Code. Retailers who have committed to conform to the Code are entitled to display the SafeBuy logo on their website.

As a matter of record, since 2003 SafeBuy has removed over 130 subscribers from SafeBuy membership for breaches of the Code.

The Star Rating Scheme
Consumer review schemes have become notorious for being open to distortion and dishonesty including – maybe even especially – in the web retailing industry.

Accordingly SafeBuy has determined five key characteristics for consumer reviews of retailers for its Star Rating operation.

1. The request for a review must go to all consumers who have recently purchased from the retailer. This is achieved by a copy of the order acknowledgement, which is required by law to be sent to the consumer within 24 hours of ordering, being sent to the SafeBuy secure research centre. SafeBuy itself then sends an invitation to review to every customer who has placed an order.

The retailer cannot ‘cherry pick’ the consumers to whom the review opportunity is sent. SafeBuy has additional controls to avoid fake order acknowledgements.

2. All consumer responses are published online as soon as received by SafeBuy with no intervention possible by the retailer. It is known that some supposedly independent review systems allow the retailer to intervene with what becomes published. SafeBuy and the OFT agreed that this open publication requirement was essential.

3. There is no opportunity for the retailer to respond to the consumer’s review in the public arena. There has been a rather insidious idea that the retailer resolving any complaints sometime later makes everything OK. This circumstance perpetuates two fallacies. Firstly, any adverse consumer review already follows a situation which the retailer patently hasn’t resolved until it became public and this fact should be made clear. Secondly, although the retailer is given a public right of reply the consumer is not given any right of comeback again. Hardly a balanced operation and seems to be designed to perpetuate the fallacy that it makes everyone happy when in fact the consumer may have been ‘bought off’..

4. It is wishful thinking that individual consumers can give accurate star ratings. No consumer has the knowledge of what the overall parameters are and what is or isn’t important – except to them. And what one consumer may rate as 4, another may rate as 2. Assembling or averaging these ratings does not make them any more accurate. So the SafeBuy Stars system drills down into individual areas so that any potential customer can see what is good, indifferent or even bad about the retailer in 10 different areas of the business. All the feedback, including the last 20 responses for the retailer, is openly published.

5. As noted, the SafeBuy Star ratings are not subjectively determined by individual consumers. Consumers individually have different priorities. For one it’s speed of delivery. For another it’s telephone support in times of difficulty. So the SafeBuy Star ratings are determined by an algorithm known only to SafeBuy which is based on feedback from almost 2,500 mediations conducted since 2006 and constantly updated. Where overall problems with delivery timescales are most prominent the weighting is high. Where overall problems with support are most significant … and so on. Only SafeBuy is believed to hold comprehensive UK online retail mediation data in this manner.

See http://care.safebuy.org.uk/what-is-safebuy/ and scroll down for more Star Ratings data with further links to a sample successful retailer. Retailers who have a SafeBuy Stars rating of over three stars are entitled to display the SafeBuy Stars logo on their website. Those with consistently under three stars are removed from SafeBuy membership.

Mediations
Since 2006 SafeBuy has conducted almost 2,500 mediations between consumers and retailers. All documentation from either party or the SafeBuy mediator is copied to both parties.

In fact all mediations have proved successful except where, in under 2% of cases, the retailer is no longer trading. It is not possible to check on every SafeBuy subscriber every day but it is a certainty that SafeBuy would know of a problem earlier than almost anybody else because of mediation requests.

In the event of a retailer ceasing to trade SafeBuy advises the consumer of their rights with both credit and debit cards to ensure that they are correctly recompensed. It has been noted over time that staff at the issuing banks sometimes seem not to know either the law or their own rules in the matter, so clear instructions are given to the consumer up to and including involvement with the banking Ombudsman and the Small Claims Court.

SafeBuy holds hundreds of emails of thanks on file from consumers who have used the mediation services. It also notes retailers’ overall experience of SafeBuy accreditation and membership at http://care.safebuy.org.uk/reviews/

In each of the three elements shown above SafeBuy is uniquely positioned as an independent leader in its field. Feedback from SafeBuy has been fed into the ISO 10008 world standard for web retailing. It is a matter of record that web retailing in the UK leads the world and SafeBuy leads the UK and the world in defining the standards for, and measuring the performance of web retailers.
= end of additional information=

 

 

New: The Ideal Carrier-Grade Ethernet Tester For Saving Valuable Engineer Time on Site.

Ideal Networks UniPRO MGig1 Tester with UniPRO SEL1 Intelligent Loop-back UnitNew from IDEAL INDUSTRIES NETWORKS is the UniPRO MGig1 carrier-grade handheld Ethernet tester including the latest Y.1564 NetSAM multiple concurrent service test capability.

Designed for all engineers and subcontractors involved in carrier and metro Ethernet service turn-up, mobile Ethernet backhaul, microwave and wireless-link Ethernet setup. It’s also ideal for enterprise users who want to check up on supplier SLA (service level agreement) performance.

With its comprehensive NetSAM Y.1564 multiple concurrent service stream testing capability it is also ideal for setup testing and troubleshooting in a wide range of other applications including on-train/metro command, control and communications, trackside communications and signalling, electricity, gas and water distribution, petrochemical plants and rigs plus many other industrial Ethernet applications.

Launching the new rugged tester, which boasts IPv6 as well as IPv4 and the latest Y.1564 test program, Xing Ye, carrier-Ethernet product manager with IDEAL INDUSTRIES NETWORKS, said “most testers simply limit themselves to the prescribed tests, but by doing that they don’t help the field engineer to overcome the many hours of wasted and unproductive time on site sorting out network configuration and mis-patching issues.

“However, we have designed UniPRO MGig1 to be the engineer’s friend, adding in a suite of functions that go beyond the prescribed test and which can significantly speed up the traditional ‘trial and error’ troubleshooting of these pre-testing problems, meaning UniPRO MGig1 can save hours on site.”

For many years, technicians and engineers have had to use the rather long winded RFC 2544 for service turn-up and acceptance testing. However, RFC 2544 was devised for the lab-testing of isolated pieces of network equipment and can only test one parameter at a time, so it takes a long time and is not representative of today’s multi service-stream networks with often multiple VLANs and multiple QoS (Quality of Service) requirements all competing for limited bandwidth.

Ye continued, “the ITU Y.1564 test regime – implemented in the NetSAM software on UniPRO MGig1 – enables testing of up to eight services concurrently including colour-aware and non-colour-aware networks with Q-in-Q; VLANs nested up to eight-deep; and three levels of Label, Class, and TLL on MPLS networks.

“Layer 3 QoS tags, ToS and DSCP are also encompassed. It brings Ethernet testing forward by leaps and bounds into the 21st century and finally makes it representative of real network requirements and SLA’s.”

UniPRO MGig1 is available in copper-only or copper plus fibre formats and can perform
single ended testing, pass through testing and long distance loopback testing (in combination with its low cost companion the UniPRO SEL1 remote control active loop-back unit or a second UniPRO MGig1). For Bi-Directional testing two UniPRO MGig1s are used but the far end unit can be remote controlled removing the need for a second engineer.

UniPRO MGig1’s ‘Autotest’ button can be programmed to run a sequence of tests without further user intervention saving even more engineer time, by allowing the engineer to conduct other work without having to babysit the tester.

UniPRO MGig1 and its SEL1 companion will test copper Ethernet at 10Mb/s, 100MBb/s and 1Gb/s with the fibre enabled models also testing Gigabit Ethernet over a choice of 850nm multimode, 1310nm or 1550nm single mode fibres using interchangeable SFP modules.

The UniPRO MGig1 price starts from £1200.68, and UniPRO SEL1 is £632.61 (excl. local taxes). The UniPRO MGig1/SEL1 series of test instruments are available through a comprehensive distributor network. To read the full product brochure and find distributors visit: http://turt.co/idn15

The UniPRO MGig1/SEL1 test capabilities include:
• Y.1564 NetSAM
• RFC 2544
• BERT (bit error ratio test)
• SLA-Tick single stream and multi service streams
• Separated target and service tests
• Top-ten bandwidth users
• Simultaneous IPv4 and IPv6
• PoE and PoE+ voltage and power check
• Hub-blink cable trace
• Copper cable check
• Optical receiver power
• Detect and warn on circuits with ISDN, PBX and unexpected voltages
• Additional network stress-test traffic generation on dual-port models

 

Data Centre Global Census 2012 Results

Global Census 2012 shows investment in data centres has grown globally by 22 per cent from 2011 with a projected further increase of 14 per cent into 2013.

8th October 2012 DCD Intelligence today released the first of the global findings from the DatacenterDynamics 2012 Global Census (turt.co/dcd16), the largest worldwide quantitative survey of the data centre industry.

Key findings include the continued increase in investment in the sector, a rise in in power requirements globally and a significant increase in the uptake of outsourcing in particular the use of colocation.

Global investment levels up 22.1 per cent

Results from the census indicate that total investment in data centres has grown from approximately US$86bn globally in 2011 to $105bn globally in 2012 – a rise of 22.1%.

Commented Nicola Hayes, managing director of DCD Intelligence: “Our forecast for 2013 shows a slower rate of growth but still at a very healthy 14.5% over 2012 levels with a further $15bn of additional investment.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

The largest increase (22.5% globally) in investment from 2011 to 2012 is in the facilities management (FM) and mechanical and electrical (M&E) sectors including such areas as electrical distribution equipment and switchgear, uninterruptible power supplies (UPS), generators, cooling equipment, security equipment, fire suppression and data centre infrastructure management systems and related services (22.5% increase globally). This was up $9bn from $40bn to $49bn.

The IT equipment sector (including ‘active’ equipment such as servers, storage, switches and routers) showed slower growth at 16.7% – from $30bn to $35bn. Projecting forward this is expected to continue to increase but at a slower rate into 2013.

 

 

 

 

 

 

According to Hayes: “Much of the increase in investment in the sector is being driven by growth in less developed markets – although we continue to see some growth in the mature data centre markets of North America and Western Europe. Regions such as Asia Pacific and Latin America are the ones really fuelling global data centre investment levels.”

Reduction in ‘concern’ over power availability.

Commenting on responses to the 2012 Data Centre Census around the world on power availability and cost Hayes noted: “Surprisingly, concern as to power availability and cost – both of which have been constant topics in the media and data centre professional groups in recent years –  is actually down on a global basis.

“This is explained in part by the increasing representation amongst the sample of companies in less developed markets where power requirements are smaller and so less constrained than in mature markets. Also in part by efficiency and other strategies put in place by data centre companies over the past 12 months to mitigate against increased power costs and to overcome issues to do with availability.”

Data centre real-estate to rise sharply in 2013

The global trend for data centre ‘white space’ – the area in a data centre which houses the IT equipment – grew globally by a relatively small 8.3% from 24 million square metres to 26 square metres; though a sharper rise by 19.2% to 31 million square metres is forecast for 2013.

 

 

 

 

Significant increase in outsourcing

There has been a significant increase in the uptake of outsourcing globally – particularly colocation – over the past 12 months (up 31.3% from $16bn to $21bn) and this is projected to continue with a further $5bn increase into 2013.

Reasons for this in the Western economies include the need during tough economic times to reduce CapEx as well as increasing complexities in the data centre environment.

However the greatest growth in outsourcing is evident in the Asia Pacific region where growth in large scale state of the art colocation facilities is encouraging companies to outsource rather than lease or buy their own space.

Commenting on the findings, Zahl Limbuwala, chairman of the BCS Data Centre Specialist Group (whose 1400 strong membership represents all functions and facets of the industry from engineering to software and legal) said “The findings outlined in the DCD Global Census 2012 largely support the more qualitative trends our members have seen over the last year.

“The figures support the continued investment BCS has committed to the sector through initiatives such as the CEEDA Awards and data centre qualifications.”

Census 2012 reports can be pre-ordered now and DCD Intelligence is already accepting enquiries for bespoke analysis. Go tohttp://turt.co/dcd16

 

REGIONAL SUMMARIES

Asia Pacific

Results from the DatacenterDynamics Global Census illustrates the rate at which the data centre market is growing in Asia Pacific. Total investment in the sector is up 24.2% 2011- 2012 with China showing the highest level of individual country growth in the region. Forecasts from the census predict that this growth will continue into 2013.

The region also shows the largest growth in terms of power requirements with a 48.6% increase in data centre power requirements over the past 12 months compared to 5.3% growth in power requirements in the more mature market of North America. Says Nicola Hayes, managing director of DCD Intelligence ‘these figures reflect the significant build that has occurred in the region over the past 12 months as the market moves towards a more mature level as well as  highlighting a potential issue in terms of power provisioning over the next few years’.

Latin America

Results from the DatacenterDynamics Global Census show that there has been significant growth in the data centre sector in Latin America over the past 12 months although the market remains fragmented throughout the region. Investment in the sector has grown by 31.4%, up from $10.5bn in 2011 to $13.8bn in 2012.

Most facilities are still end user owned and operated and on a small scale in terms of individual data centre size. The region has the lowest percentage globally of companies outsourcing data centre operations to a colocation provider though this is expected to increase over the next few years as the market matures and more state of the art colocation facilities come on line. Power requirements are also rising in the region with a 41.2% increase in requirements over the past 12 months and this too is expected to drive demand for colocation and outsourcing solutions in the sector.

North America

Results from the DatacenterDynamics Global Census show modest growth in the North American data centre market especially when compared to Asia Pacific and Latin America. Investment in data centres in North America grew by 14% over the past 12 months, a lower level than seen in previous years. Says Nicola Hayes, managing director of DCD Intelligence: “It should be remembered that this market is a far more mature one than other regions and so growth levels will naturally be lower than in the developing markets. For example although investment in the Latin American market has grown by 31.4% over the same period the total amount invested is $13.8bn compared to North America where the investment over the past 12 months is estimated to be $44.1bn. The economic climate has however had a slight impact on IT and in particular data centre spend with companies being more cautious than in previous years with regards to where investments are made.”

Power requirements North America

In spite of much media hysteria about power requirements in the data centre sector, power requirements in North America have in fact only grown by 5.3% . Figures from the census relating to power usage awareness, carbon emissions monitoring  and overall energy monitoring are also positive in the region showing a growing commitment to reducing energy costs and addressing high PUE ratios.

Europe

In spite of tough economic conditions throughout the region, the data centre sector has continued to show steady growth in terms of investment levels. Results from the DatacenterDynamics Global Census show that investment in data centres in Europe has grown by 13.6% in the period 2011 – 2012, up from $40.5bn in 2011 to $46bn in 2012.  Although this growth appears modest in comparison to regions such as Asia Pacific and Latin America (24.2% and 31.4% respectively), it is a similar growth rate to the other mature data centre markets of North America and Europe – which still account for a high proportion of total global data centre investment ($105bn globally).

 

About the 2012 Data centre Census

Supported this year by Cummins, Siemens and the BCS, the Chartered Industry for IT, the DatacenterDynamics Industry Census is the largest comparative study of data centre owners operators and end users worldwide. Designed to provide statistically significant insight into the scope and direction of the industry not only on a worldwide basis but also at a regional and country level, results provide the industry with robust insight into actual yearly growth in terms of power and space requirements, key technologies and other issues facing data centre professionals.

About DCD

With offices in locations around the globe, 54 conferences in 37 countries and business intelligence and professional development offered on a worldwide scale, DatacenterDynamics is a truly global specialist provider of content to the data centre Ind

 

 

 

Brand-Rex Makes Light Work Of Splicing With KeyQuick®

Brand-Rex, the leading supplier of copper and fibre optic based network infrastructure solutions for enterprises, data centres and extreme environments, has announced the availability of the innovative KeyQuick mechanical splice and field installable connectors. Designed to ensure superior, high performance fibre optic based networks, the system meets the need for a fast, accurate and user friendly splicing process.

Available in the UK exclusively from Brand-Rex, the KeyQuick mechanical splice offers industry leading reliability and its unique design gives superb results consistently performing under 0.1db. Easy to connect, it has a unique transparent body with refractive properties that ensures accuracy by acting as a visual fault detector. A red light becomes visible within the splice body when fibres are misaligned, but then disappears when a good connection is made. This design also means that no additional tools are required to verify the connection.

For installers time is money and using KeyQuick allows 2.5 times more singlemode (OS1 and OS2) or multimode (OM3 and OM4) fibre connections when compared with the traditional fusion splice method.

Ideal for deployment in any fibre optic cabling infrastructure, the connectors and mechanical splices provide an easy way to make field terminations that improve installation times within buildings or outside plant without compromising performance. This can make a real difference in data centres, enterprise LANs, WANs, FTTx and next generation networks,

KeyQuick mechanical splices and field terminateable connectors are available in the UK only from Brand-Rex and in the other regions where they operate. This new product perfectly complements the Brand-Rex industry leading fibre optic cabling systems, including its FibrePlus range.

‘Splicing fibre optic cables is a time consuming and laborious task, which must be completed with meticulous care and attention,’ commented Ken Hodge, Chief Technology Officer at Brand-Rex. ‘Therefore, anything that can help make the process faster while ensuring the quality of the splice should be of interest to the many installers carrying out this type of work. KeyQuick is able to achieve all these objectives and I’m delighted that we are able to offer this solution as part of our expanding fibre optic cabling portfolio.’

For more information go to www.brand-rex.com/keyquick

Our Ref: BRX0514

Cannon Technologies Moves Into The Vertical Position

Cannon Technologies is pleased to add a new element to its T4 range of data centre offerings: Vertical Aisle Cocooning for data centres.

According to Mark Awdas, Cannon Technologies’ engineering manager, Vertical Aisle Cocooning for data centres is a unique solution to air routing and containment for all types of racks – including OEM and non-Cannon systems – and ensures that the airflow is maintained in the correct direction and at full velocity.

Awdas reports that one of the biggest challenges for data centre designers and managers in recent years has been the rising power consumption of computer and network racks – a trend that is being driven by more and more powerful multi-core processors.

“The heat generated by these high-density and high-power IT systems is significant, so cooling is of paramount importance. Data centre designers have now settled on rapid-chilled air flows after experimenting with water – and even cryogenic – cooling methodologies,” he explains.

The Cannon Technologies’ engineering manager notes that containing that airflow in a vertical direction – with the hot air rising and the cold air falling – is another challenge.

If the airflow leaks into adjacent compartments, the efficiency level of a given aisle – and that section of the data centre – starts to fall, as more energy is required to ensure an adequate airflow is maintained, he reports.

This is where Cannon Technologies Vertical Aisle Cocooning enters the frame as a highly cost-effective cooling solution – such is the importance of cost-effective cooling in a modern data centre, he notes, that Intel has invested tens of millions of dollars over the years in developing its server chips to integrate with third-party cooling systems.

In July of last year, says Awdas, Intel revealed it was adding new sensors to its server chips to assist companies in improving the efficiency of their data centre cooling systems – with the aim of reducing operating costs and extending the life of equipment.

Applied science such as Cannon Technologies Vertical Aisle Cocooning can assist data centre owners and users in helping to keep energy costs at a minimum, as well as maintaining hardware at its optimum temperature, and so prolong the life of IT systems.

There are, he says, profound consequences if data centre hardware fails – for whatever reason – as clients rarely tolerate downtime.

Cannon Technologies’ applied science helps to prevent that downtime – as well as maximising the life of the systems – and so keeping clients happy, he adds.

“And since our clients include Governments – who use our technology in their classified data centres – this is why we have developed our Vertical Aisle Cocooning technology to ensure that the air flows in the direction(s) it is supposed to,” he notes.

“All of Cannon Technologies’ Aisle Cocooning features and benefits are maintained with the vertical offering, which has received a positive response from our beta test adopters of this advancement. The fact that this is both cost-effective and easy to deploy/maintain, is something our customers report as highly pleasing. Additionally it is an effective addition to the extensive range of Cannon Aisle Cocooning solutions offered by Cannon,” he concludes.
For more on Cannon Technologies: http:// www.cannontech.co.uk

CAN0174UK

Global Domination For Cannon T4 Data Centre Manager

Cannon Technologies has announced new developments and advances to their long established Cannon T4 Data Centre Manager (T4 DCM) software suite.

The latest version allows the network operations centre (NOC) to monitor a company’s entire global data centre portfolio as a single bar on the monitor screen. The bar is green when all is alarm-free, but as soon as any out-of-operating-window or out-of-tolerance situation is detected (related to power, temperature, security, cooling and hundreds of other factors) at any of the data centres globally – the bar will flash red and an audible alarm is sounded.

One mouse click on the flashing bar reveals the data centre containing the alarm situation. A second click zooms straight to the offending rack and displays full details of the alarm conditions. Preventative or restorative action can be instigated in seconds.

Grouping
The new release gives admins the ability to create unlimited numbers of Groups and to assign every asset (such as racks, sensors and individual pieces of active equipment) to multiple Groups in Cannon T4 DCM means that admins and users can easily view factors (such as power load, cooling load, security status, doors open for maintenance, UPS status etc) in groupings that are logical for that user.

For example you could create a Global Group for all racks in any data centre where there are servers belonging to the HR department’s operations. Or a complete global view of power. Or perhaps all DCs in a county such as Yorkshire – or a region such as AsiaPac. It is totally flexible, to reflect real-world operational requirements.

Granular security
It’s not widely recognized yet that DCIM (data centre infrastructure management) information – such as power consumption – can be used to gain commercial intelligence on a co-located competitor’s operations. But it can.

Yet most DCIM systems allow all users, including co-lo customers, to have access to the full suite of information. The only solution with such systems is to bar all customers from having access, which is clearly unsatisfactory.

The latest release of Cannon T4 Data Centre Manager instigates Granular Security so that, for example, departments and customers can easily be restricted to seeing only the information relevant to them – ensuring commercial confidentiality.

Granular Groupings
Adding together both granular security and groupings now means that a multi-site customer can have access on a global view basis to all of their relevant operational information in any groupings they want – but with total confidence that no competitors can see their commercially sensitive statistics at any of the controlled data centres worldwide.

Predictive configuration
This latest release of Cannon T4 DCM just got smart. It now learns from your previous activities. So, if DCM detects that you’re configuring a cabinet security lock (be it RFID, PINcode, fingerprint or iris scan), T4 DCM will immediately detect all other unconfigured locks and ask if you want to configure them too.

It also identifies all relevant configs already stored and offers these for re-use or editing. If required, T4 DCM will then do an ‘all at once’ configuration for maybe several hundred racks. This is a massive time saver.

Smart Action
The temperature in Rack 237 in a data centre in Malaysia 7000km away is rising.
Cannon T4 DCM has identified this as a ‘worrying trend’. But no need for the NOC in Germany to take any action – T4 DCM can issue SNMP commands to the equipment in that rack to shed load.

If that doesn’t reverse the trend, maybe due to a fault condition, T4 DCM can issue further instructions to undertake an orderly shut down.

As a last resort – in order to ensure that a whole rack of equipment isn’t causing overheat damage – T4 DCM will disconnect the power from one or more pieces of equipment in the rack until the temperature is under control. Full information is provided back to the NOC.

Of course this is just one illustration of thousands of possible smart actions that the new Cannon T4 DCM can take. For full details of the very latest Cannon T4 Data Centre Manager developments, please go to : http://turt.co/can148l

CAN0148

Cannon Technologies Sees Phenomenal Demand For Its Unique Broadcast Cabinet

Cannon Technologies has witnessed a tremendous response to its Broadcast Cabinet, the only containment solution of its kind designed specifically for the media industry and one that has quickly become the preferred option for broadcast infrastructure professionals.

Traditionally the broadcasting industry has adapted standard 600mm cabinets to suit its needs, however, due to the large amount of cabling used in this type of application, this often has unsatisfactory results. After meeting with a number of industry representatives, including a global broadcasting corporation, Cannon Technologies devised a cabinet to perfectly meet their specific requirements.

Space was the main concern and the Broadcast Cabinet provides significantly enhanced cabling capacity due to unique, wider spaced depth members that position vertical cable trays at maximum width settings. Additional space between the rails and the side panels equates to an extra 30mm wide area down each side, vastly reducing the likelihood of cable goose necking.

Another significant design feature is its ruggedised construction. Before being delivered on site, cabinets are usually taken to a third party integrator and populated with the necessary equipment. With the weight of the equipment, an ordinary fully loaded cabinet can become twisted and damaged in transit, which is why the Broadcast Cabinet is made of strengthened metal that is welded together.

The product underwent extensive testing and evaluation by the broadcasting corporation and it is available in 42U and 47U heights and depths of 800mm, 900mm and 1000mm. The open front allows easy access to equipment and ensures the cabinet has a smart aesthetic finish. Cannon Technologies now services 90 per cent of the market with this solution, which is used by prestigious blue chip industry organisations.

It has also been extensively specified throughout MediaCityUK, the state-of-the-art broadcasting and media based development located in Salford. TSL, the UK’s leading creator of integrated broadcast systems, deployed over 130 pre-assembled Broadcast Cabinets at 47Ux1000mm with a specially designed raised access floor technology system.

An installation team from Cannon Technologies then installed cold aisle containment using its innovative Aisle Cocoon concept. Aisle Cocoon is a technically advanced temperature control solution that provides a system of overhead aisle panels and end doors that effectively seal off the cold aisle. A total of 11 Aisle Cocoons were fitted in compliance with stringent onsite regulations including Bovis clearance, CSCS and IPAF certification.

Cannon Technologies’ sales director, Max Zaccaria, commented, ‘The response we’ve had to the Broadcast Cabinet since its introduction has been overwhelming. It’s clear that the industry has benefitted from having a solution that perfectly suits its containment requirements and it’s another example of the forward thinking approach that Cannon Technologies adopts to everything it does.’

CAN0155

Data Centre Industry Still Robust Despite Tough Economic Conditions Says DatacenterDynamics Industry Census

Early indications from the DatacenterDynamics 2012 Global Industry Census show that the threat of global recession is having minimal impact on growth in the worldwide Data Centre Industry.

Full 2012 census results are due to be published in Q3/2012 and will provide the industry with robust information on the true affect of economic uncertainty is having on the industry on a regional and country by country basis.

Census research continues until the 27th July and any data centre professional yet to complete the survey can do so at http://turt.co/dcd12. DCD Intelligence is donating $5 to the international children’s’ charity UNICEF for every Census Survey completed.

With no signs of the general economic malaise ending anytime soon, some industry commentators have warned that the data centre industry should be prepared for a drastic slowdown in growth.

Nicola Hayes, managing director of DCD Intelligence, takes a different view.  “Whilst countries with highly developed data centre markets will almost certainly see lower growth figures than previously enjoyed, all indicators (including initial responses to the 2012 Industry Census) point to continued growth across the sector. This is particularly so in under-developed countries – as investors, technology companies and Governments in those areas continue in their efforts to ensure they stand a chance of competing in an IT enabled world.”

Hayes explained that data centres have become an integral part of the internet and IT infrastructure and growth in internet usage, rich media, cloud computing and Smartphone use all have had a positive effect on the data centre industry and its many supply industries.

Current figures for the number of internet users globally sit at around 2.11bn, more than doubled since 2007 (source: Internet world statistics) and this still only accounts for around 30% of the world’s population leaving wide room for further growth.

Forecasts generated from the results of the DataCentreDynamics Industry Census 2011 predicted a worldwide data centre growth rate of 7% from 2011 to 2012 with some less mature markets showing growth rates of up to 60%.

Hayes concludes “The early results from the 2012 Data Centre Industry census illustrate the fact that the overall health of the industry is remarkably robust.”

About the 2012 DatacenterDynamics Industry Census

The DataCenterDynamics 2012 Industry Census is the largest worldwide quantitative data centre survey.  Supported by Siemens, Cummins and the BCS the results of the census offer the most comprehensive analysis of issues and trends affecting the sector. By donating $5 for each completed questionnaire, DatacenterDynamics is also using the census as an instrument to raise funds for international children’s charity UNICEF. It is anticipated that this year a total of $40,000 will be raised.

About DatacenterDynamics

With offices in locations around the globe, 54 conferences in 37 countries and business intelligence and professional development offered on a worldwide scale, DataCenterDynamics is a truly global specialist provider of content to the Data Centre Industry.