WESTERN COUNTY BANK SCENARIO 6
WesternCounty Bank Scenario
WesternCounty Bank Scenario
Everysuccessful business is founded on the principles of propermanagement. One of the integral management roles is planning. Withoutplanning success in businesses may seem a drift away from reality.Thus, if a business wants to succeed management must ensure that allits critical and basic activities are well planned to meet the needsof the customers in the market. Most often organizations fail becausethey do not address the specific needs of the customers. The impactof such failures is that more and more customers withdraw from thebusinesses rendering it unprofitable in the long run. In thisrespect, Western County Bank needs to restructure its operations andmore specifically its systems to attain efficiency and reliability.In the wake of increasing use of technology, the company cannotafford to lose its credibility in the market (Gil Lafuente et al.,2012). The need to operate efficiently and meet the needs of thecustomers makes it worthwhile to have reliable systems.
Atthe same time, the banking system needs to offer employees and thecustomers’ ease of access to information. Moreover, the system mustbe secured and operational 24/7. This means that if a customer wantsto make a withdrawal at any time of the day, he or she should be ableto do it without any hindrances (Kołodziejczyk & Ogiela, 2012).Essentially, the bank needs to move its operations to an E-bankingframework in a bid to capitalize on the large market. The system isan essential approach to cutting on costs, enhancing reliability andensuring maximum satisfaction among the customers and the employees.With the system in place and operational, there will be a reductionin the physical routines (Gil Lafuente et al., 2012). The systemswill devoid the need to physically visit the bank to make anytransaction. Similarly, employees will be able to work beyond thedesignated time in the bank by logging into the systems remotely.
Figure1: Network Model
Router:the layer three in the OSI model deals with routing of the data fromone point to another in the network system. The layer is also termedas the networking layer. The primary role of the layer is to fosterthe translation of logical addresses into physical addresses. In abid to deal with network traffics, the bank has redundant routers.The routers are required to deal with maintenance and outages(McMillan, 2012). This is exhibited in the diagram above withredundant routers both at the internet and WAN levels. The networkmakes use of the ARIN assigned public Internet Protocol. Thus, thedevice works in the layer three of the OSI model.
Switch:Layer two of the OSI model is also termed as the Data link layer. Thelayer is responsible for the conversion of information in thephysical layer into packages. In the case of Western County Bank,there is a need to make use of redundant switches in a bid to enhancehigh performance. As illustrated in the diagram, the used switchesare connected to the routers, and server as well as the datacenter.Moreover, in a bid to enhance performance, the company will make useof the Cisco Catalyst 4948, as shown by the 10 gigabit Ethernetswitch. Thus, the device will properly work in the layer two of theOSI model.
AccessPoint: the role of the device is the provision of the wirelessconnections to the internet or web based applications around thebuilding. At the same time, it is used in the creation of a guestnetwork. The device will properly work in layer two of the OSI layer.
ProxyServer: the transport layer is the fourth layer in the OSI model, andit is responsible for handling error recognition and recoverymanagement. It fosters complete communication and data transfer.Layer 5 is the session layer and creates sessions and connectionsbetween computers. The 6thlayer is the presentation layer and is mandated for formatting thedata for the application layer based on the needs of the operatingsystems. The 7thlayer is the application layer that supports various applications,emails, file transfer and games among many others (Kołodziejczyk &Ogiela, 2012). In a bid to foster the services offered by layers 4,5, 6, and 7, the network is equipped with a proxy server.
Cables:the 1st layer is the physical layer and enhances the transfer ofinformation in forms of bits from one system to another andregulation of the transmission of stream of bits across a physicalmedium. In this case, the cables used offer speeds of 10 Gbps. Thecables used in the network fall under the physical layer of the OSImodel.
ISP:there are two internet service providers that ensure that the companyhas continued access to the internet. The use of two companies offersredundancy in internet connections.
Datacenter:the role of the Datacenter is to store all the private andconfidential information.
LogicalFunctions: the proxy servers offer abilities to filter requests ofthe users. At the same time masks the internal network in a bid toenhance security and provide high performance levels (McMillan,2012). Internnectivity devices: cables are used to connect devices inthe network. The cables used in the bank ran at a speed of 10gigabits per second. Redundancy is established for faster and betterperformance.
B1:Local Area Network (LAN)
Alocal area network is developed with an intention of addressing theneeds of a small region. The aim of LAN in WCB is to make use ofreliable and fast data transfer mechanisms and tools within a smallgeographical area. Weston is supposed to make use of LAN within itsoffices in a bid to enhance the data transfer between the employeesand management. In this case the bank will need to use Ethernetcables owing to the fact that they are efficient forms oftransferring information. At the same time, Ethernet cable datatransfer is more reliable and secure as opposed to the wirelesssystems. This is because network administrators are able to managethe data effectively. LAN enables the storage of data in a centralcomputer system and allows easy sharing of company resources(McMillan, 2012).
Inrelation to LAN the need of the company is to come up with a wirelessnetwork that will support the needs of the employees and thecustomers. Thus, in respect to this a wireless access point has beenprovided. At the same time, the VLANs are established to enhancediversified communication among different users. Similarly, switcheshave been provided to spur the connections to the internet. Redundantrouters are meant to harness the maintenance of planned outages. Theuse of the proxy servers in the network provides masking abilities ofthe actual addresses, hence, improving security. In addition to thecables, the company makes use of the network interface controller(NIC). The NIC along with the optical fiber cables connect to theswitches that authenticate all the network users. Active directoriesensure enhanced security.
Atthe same time, file transfer and recovery is easy when LAN is used inthe bank. The reason is based on the fact that backup files arestored in a single server. In addition, there is restricted LAN PCsthat offer adequate security to the data and only authentic users areable to share and access the data.
WCBbenefits from the use of LAN because it will be able to enhance itssecurity structure, rely on fast processing speeds, and enhancecommunications between the offices in the same building. Leveragingon the strengths of LANs, WCB needs to create different connectionsover multiple ISP: preferably three ISPs. The approach will besignificant in increasing redundancy of the network systems. At thesame time, the company can opt for the use of cloud based services asan alternative to its existing service channels. In cases of failureof internal systems, the cloud based services can suffice as viableoptions to enhance continuity (Chou & Schaar, 2012).
Firewallsare significant tools that can be used by the company to enhancesecurity of the network system. Since the bank operates criticaloperations, it is worthwhile for it to adopt reliable systems.Through the firewalls, system administrators can be able to sieveboth the incoming and outgoing data packets: improving the assessmentand monitoring of the systems. In a bid to reduce the overall costsof the network it will be prudent to make use of the Power overEthernet cables: they will enhance transmission of both power anddata across the network.
B2:Wide Area Network (WAN) Configuration
WesternCounty Bank will make use of its WAN to make communications to itsdistant branches. In this case the use of LAN will be limited. TheWAN may either be point to point or operate in packet switchednetworks across shared circuits. The best choice for the companypegged on the structure of its LAN is the packet switched WAN sinceit is easy to monitor and upgrade at any time. WAN is advantageous tothe bank since it enhances the connection of more than one LAN. Thismeans that all the branches of the bank will be interconnected.Devices like routers, firewalls, modems, and switches will be used inthe connection coupled up by the use of the TCP/IP protocol (Chou &Schaar, 2012).
Theneeds of the bank in relation to WAN are to provide a 10 gigabit persecond speed links and redundant internet access. This is in a bid tooffer high speed and availability. In the company redundant routershave been established at the internet and WAN levels to meet theneeds of the organization. Redundant internet connections have beenprovided to ensure that there is continuity of services. Further, theorganization will use the Hot Standby Router Protocol (HSRP) in agateway protocol in this case if one router fails, it willautomatically reroute to another link. Currently, the company has twobranches connected by WAN. In both cases there are redundant routers,and redundant ISPs. The bank has VLAN and NIC.
Communicationacross WAN is often vulnerable due to its exposed nature. WAN isshared by many users and this exposes information transmitted throughit to a wide range of risks. The main security walls leveraged by thebank include the use of dedicated routers, firewalls, and additionalsecurity software components from third party security companies.Further the integrity and reliability of individual LAN is essentialin harnessing the security of the WAN in the bank. This explains theessence of upgrading the LAN to meet the industry standards.Moreover, the use of the TCP/IP protocol is essential in managing theinformation shared between the branches of the bank.
WANrequires a wide range of resources that makes the more costly asopposed to the LAN. Thus, in a bid to trim down the network costs,the bank will need to leverage on the software as a serviceportfolio. This will be a viable option of ensuring that reliability,efficiency and convenience is attained in the long run. Services willonly be sought when they are required. In order to attain the SaaS,cloud based resources will be used (Langner, 2012). From the cloud,the bank will be able to utilize a wide range of applications at theleast possible costs.
Figure2: Wireless Network
Thelatest trends in the banking industry necessitate the need to usewireless networks to enhance operations in the bank. Western CountyBank needs to facilitate the use of mobile based applications andthis explains why it ought to uphold the wireless networking systemto ensure that there is smooth operations and flexibility in theworkplace. This case the main device that will be used to enhanceconnections to the wireless network is the D-Link Unified Switchwhich will be connected to the router to the network. The switch hasa high data transmission speeds and load balancing feature. Moreover,it offers high quality and reliable wireless service.
Inorder to ensure that the security of the wireless network isattained, all connections to the network will be authenticated.Customers will log into the network as guests and employees will usetheir identification numbers to access the networks. Information inthe network will be encrypted at all times. Active directory takesinto consideration different domains in the system. Customers andemployees will access different domains based on the system policies.This means that accessibility of the customers will be limited tobasic information while employees will get access to more informationcontained in the system (Langner, 2012).
Wirelessneeds of the bank include:
Allow employees and customers to use mobile devices
Offer integrated authentication using the active directories
Authenticate employees and customers before accessing the network
Ina bid to meet the needs the following aspects are adopted:
A wireless access point
Access point encryption
Thebank has a centralized storage system which is termed as a moreeffective, reliable and cheap system to maintain as opposed to thedecentralized system. The storage system will be made up of servers,databases and client portals that will use the internet to makerequests to the servers and retrieve information from the databases(McCabe, 2013). The figure below shows the bank’s storage system.
Figure3: Storage Model
Users:in relation to layer 7 of the OSI model, the organization has thewindows users and the HTTP users accessing the main system. VLANs arethen used to separate the users in various buildings.
Switch:in relation to layer 3, the switches are connected to the servers,RAID storage, and the users of the systems. Switches will work at thespeed of 10 gigabit per second and are connected to interconnectingdevices working at the data link layer of the OSI model.
RAIDStorage: in relation to the physical layer also termed as layer 1,the RAID storage technology is used the information in the company.RAID 5+1 will be adopted automatically in tandem to the physicallayer of the OSI model.
AccessPoint: access point falls under the second layer in the OSI model.The device is used in the provision of wireless access to the usersin the main building. It will run on the power over Ethernet andworks as data link layer.
Servers:web, file, database and mail servers will be used in the company tofacilitate the use of a wide range of features. The servers willcater for layers 4, 5, and 6. Error solving, data management, andsolving dependency issues are solved by the three layersrespectively.
Logicalfunctions: the storage area network is used as a primary form of datastorage for the company. The servers will be used in computation ofuser queries. The use of 10 GB access switches will be used toimplement and configure the network.
Interconnectivitydevices: cables are used to connect devices to the network. In thisscenario 10 Gbps cables are used to enhance network performance andreliability. At the same time, redundant links are established tofoster quality and assurance of the network features.
Thetechnique approach follows a sequential technique where by all theactivities in the company are done in order. Taking into perspectivethe requirements of the company, it is paramount to evaluate thevarious components used in a bid to unearth any weaknesses and gapsthat may exist in the system. After the evaluation of the componentsa proposal will be made based on the data collected. The proposedsolution will then need to be approved a budget allocated, componentsbought and a setup is made. This is followed by the implementation ofthe new proposal replacing the weak old system. Further, theemployees will need to be trained on the usage of the new system.
Itis paramount to ensure that there is proper documentation of all thedata available to ensure a good comparative platform. Thedocumentation will act as a benchmark against setting up the networkconfiguration. Examples of documentations include:
Time required to connect sessions in off peak period
Normal load hours
Peak load hours
Number of maximum users
Toensure service efficiency, the first change of increasing redundancyin the routers will be made. This is possible by the addition ofinternet and WAN routers. However, the most critical task will be tochange the cables in the system to the current 10 GB optical fibercables. This is conducted during planned or maintenance outages in abid to avoid disruptions. After the installation of the cables, theexisting switches will be replaced by new 10 GB switches. Further,RAID 5+1 will be introduced into the system and replace the existingstorage devices. After the completion of the installation of all theplanned devices, data will be transferred.
Completionof the installation of the infrastructure will give way to theconfiguration of the network to match the requirements of the bank.WAP will be configured to WAP2 security which has ability to providepre-shared private keys. Connections will be set to ask forauthentications passwords and usernames. The firewall will beconfigured and encryption protocols introduced to enhance security.Finally AD will be implemented to offer additional security layer.
Asdiscussed before all users accessing the network must be registeredin the system and they have to go through the active directoryauthentication process. User validation is one of the key approachesto ensuring that no unauthorized users access the network at anyspecific time. Network access points are essential in enhancingaccess to the systems. Wireless access points particularly aresignificant to the bank because they reduce the burden of constantlydealing with cables and wires. At the same time, they are much easierto upgrade whenever there is a need to facilitate communication(McCabe, 2013).
Generallythe efficiency of the storage system is anchored on the capacity andcapability of the network system. Thus, with a strong establishedsystem, data management will be enhanced in the long run. Security isan essential factor in ensuring that confidentiality, integrity andavailability (CIA Triad) are attained. In this retrospect, the use ofdedicated servers, firewalls, routers and switches will provideimportant security features to ensure that confidential and privateinformation is protected at all times. Other additional means ofsecurity adopted from the network to protect the storage system isthe use of strong passwords, encryption, and third party securitysoftware components.
Inorder to determine the network requirements, it is important for thebank to understand the network requirements. In this case the bank issupposed to understand its networking devises and how they aid inattaining organizational goals and policies. There are two primarygoals driving any networking design and implementation project andthey include:
Cost of Ownership
Thebank must consider the cost of developing and maintaining its networkas compared to its budget. On most cases the costs can run intomillions of dollars and if improperly developed and implemented itmay surpass the budget limits. Similarly, the issue of compatibilityand accessibility to critical applications is important. The bankmust ensure that the required applications are readily available fordifferent network users. It must also ensure that the network isworking properly. The main components of application availabilitythat must be addressed by the bank include the response time,reliability, and throughput. In order for the bank to reap maximumbenefits it must carry out its activities online and embrace theconcept of cloud computing (Vivas, Agudo, & López, 2010).Finally, resources should be scheduled to when they are needed themost. Through this approach downturns will be immensely reduced andsystem continuity enhanced. Another important consideration to makeis the compatibility of the devices use in the network in addition tothe software components. Without compatibility, the whole networkwill collapse eventually disrupting the whole operations of thecompany.
Systemimplementation is the most crucial step and it is at stage that mostoften failures occur. In a bid to prevent system downturns, thesystem will be implemented in a step wise manner. A complete overhaulof the system may lead to disruptions in the banking services. Thismeans that if such approach is applied customers may be denied accessto the system or their money until such a process is complete. At thesame time, it is more risky because if the system fails to conform tothe needs of the customers and employees, then it will cost thecompany more money to restore it. Thus, in a bid to cushion the bankfrom unprecedented losses, it is imperative to implement the systemin stages or phases. It is only after the first phase is ascertainedto be correct that the next phase is implemented. Such a stage wiseprocess will ensure that there are no downturns experienced (McCabe,2013). However, in case they do arise it will be much easier tohandle them and restore the services as soon as possible.
Theproject requirements can be classified as either software related orhardware related. Software components cannot be able to function ontheir own without the involvement of the hardware components.Requirements for the project included:
Implementation of security at all layers of the OSI model
Enhancing redundancy in case some of the components failed
Support 10 Gbps in connecting devices
Use access points to create customer connections and provide wireless security by the use of AD
Use power over Ethernet to deploy access points
Maintain data backup and configure storage systems in line with SAN
Provide HTTP and QoS
Use VLAN with class C subnets in a bid to divide the users
Integration of cloud computing platform
Involvementof all stakeholders is a crucial requirement that cannot beforfeited. Project success cannot be attained if the employees,management and the customers do not play a role. Since this is a caseof a complex system that links together a wide range of processes itis always prudent in this case to ensure that all stakeholders are onboard. Employees, managers, and the customers will be used immenselyin testing and implementing the system. These are the people who willaid in pinpointing system flaws that may not be clear to thetechnical team. Thus, extensive consultation is a key requirementthat can be graded as a soft requirement in project development.
Asdiscussed before a step wise approach will be adopted in theimplementation of the system. This will suffice as a viable optionthat will reduce any disruptions or inconveniences that may arise inthe development and implementation process. As compared to theparallel strategies in implementing systems, the staged strategy isless costly and requires minimal resources to pull up successfully.Further, a complete overhaul of the system is not credible since itis likely to lead to disruptions and impacting the performance of thesystems. It is also important to note that most system replacementwill be done in odd hours. This is the time when the least number ofcustomers and employees are active (Chou & Schaar, 2012). Atnight there are fewer activities and the systems can be disrupted fora maximum of two hours. Before the disruptions during this time ofthe day, customers will be sent notifications to inform them of theplanned system upgrades and the disruptions that will arise.
Importantmonitoring tools used in the evaluation of the network performanceinclude:
Bandwidth monitoring: in this case packet sniffing, NetFlow and SNMP software are used to give a complete illustration of the traffic flow in the network. The tools help in classifying network traffic based on IP address, port and other associated parameters.
Performance monitoring: the monitoring tools check the speed of the network, network loading, and memory load. This is significant because it shows the overall performance of the network based on the workload.
Theupgrade will provide a viable option to solve network downtime issuesthat have crippled the performance of the bank. Customers andemployees will be connected to the system from anywhere in the worldas long as they are connected to the network. Further, securityissues will be addressed adequately with the new and upgraded system.Thus, the system will adhere to the industry best practices and thesecurity standards and regulations.
Theadoption of a stage wise of phased system implementation strategywill not have a huge impact to the overall system. This will play acritical role in avoiding any forms of unnecessary disruptions to thesystem.
Improvedcustomer satisfaction occurs from the accessibility, reliability andefficiency of the system. Customers tend to be satisfied if they canaccess the system within the shortest time possible. System downturnsand delays are major contributors to customer dissatisfaction andimmediately these factors are addressed there is a chance ofattaining high customer satisfaction. Moreover, if their transactionsgo on successfully instantaneously then they are satisfied.Similarly, security is a major issue that customers are consciousabout in the modern society. This means that if properly addressedthen customers will be satisfied with the security of the systems. Inorder to measure the satisfaction levels of the customers it isimportant to conduct interviews or online surveys to ascertain thatthey are satisfied.
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