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GCN : September 2013
GCN SEPTEMBER 2013 • GCN.COM 9 ONLINE REPORT SPONSORED BY NETAPP EMERGING CYBER THREATS DEMAND NEW THINKING TOPICS INCLUDE: CYBERSECURITY FEELS BUDGET PRESSURES AGENCIES EAGER TO STEP UP CYBERSECURITY TRAINING CLOUD SECURITY CONCERNS GIVE AGENCIES PAUSE AGENCIES SEEK NEW CYBERSECURITY INSIGHTS TO LEARN MORE, VISIT: www.gcn.com/2013CyberSec RESEARCH REPORT The nation's inland waterways are among the last vestiges of pre-Internet technology, where barges and tugboats communicate via radios and air horns. The Port of Pittsburgh Commission is changing that, building a state-of- the-art Wi-Fi network for its inland wa- terways that will ultimately extend to at least 10 locks and dams in Allegheny, Beaver, Washington and Westmoreland counties, integrating real-time naviga- tion information, cargo-tracking and the operation of waterway sensors. "We have a very real economic and human interest in improving the safety, security and ef ciency of our inland communications system, and Pitts- burgh serves as a unique laboratory for this technology," said James McCar- ville, PPC's executive director. PPC's network, dubbed the Wireless Waterways Project, reportedly is the rst of its kind on inland waterways, and port of cials say they hope the system will be expanded across the country to help the barge industry na- tionwide. Currently the wireless project covers locks and dams and six miles of three rivers in Allegheny County -- the Pittsburgh Pool at Emsworth (Ohio Riv- er), Braddock (Monongahela River) and Allegheny Lock #2 (Allegheny River). To date, river vessels have missed the boat on wireless technology, falling back on technology such as VHF radio. Most rivers run through rural or low- income areas, and cell phone reception and Internet availability can be spotty. Improving communications along the waterways will help allow for bet- ter scheduling between, for instance, barges and the trucks that pick up their loads. The project also is expected to improve communications interoperabil- ity with the Coast Guard and other law enforcement agencies. PPC awarded Connxx Pennsylvania the $1.3 million contract to design, build, operate, manage and maintain the network, which will be available to cell phones, tablets and other wireless devices. PPC and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers are overseeing the effort, which was initiated in 2009.The Project is funded in part by a $975,000 federal port security grant and $325,000 in matching funds from the PPC. The project is now in its third phase of implementation. • Pittsburgh launches WiFi network for inland waterways BY KATHLEEN HICKEY