Kathi Blease

Section 889 – Parts A and B – John S. McCain National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year 2019

Section 889 of the John S. McCain National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year 2019 has two major parts. Effective August 13th, 2019, Part A stipulates that:

“The head of an executive agency may not procure or obtain or extend or renew a contract to procure or obtain any equipment, system, or service that uses covered telecommunications equipment or services as a substantial or essential component of any system, or as critical technology as part of any system.”

Covered Telecommunications equipment is described as:

“Telecommunications equipment produced by Huawei Technologies Company or ZTE Corporation (or any subsidiary or affiliate of such entities)” or “…video surveillance and telecommunications equipment produced by Hytera Communications Corporation, Hangzhou Hikvision Digital Technology Company, or Dahua Technology Company (or any subsidiary or affiliate of such entities).”

Basically, the Federal Government can no longer use Huawei, ZTE, Hytera, Hangzhou Hikvision, or Dahua products or services.

This has led to Government agencies replacing covered telecommunications equipment and video surveillance equipment with products from countries other than China. We will cover the Trade Agreements Act and Buy American Act relating to this in another blog post.

Meanwhile, Part B of Section 889 became effective August 13th, 2020. Part B states:

“The head of an executive agency may not enter into a contract (or extend or renew a contract) with an entity that uses any equipment, system, or service that uses covered telecommunications equipment or services as a substantial or essential component of any system, or as critical technology as part of any system.”

This expands upon Part A in that not only can Agencies not buy equipment from the banned companies from China, but the Agencies also cannot buy equipment from companies that use the banned equipment directly or in their supply chain. This is a high bar for many small businesses. A recent GSA webinar outlined the standard as making a reasonably inquiry into your supply chain to ensure compliance including within your company. This would include popular webcams, CCTV cameras, and other telecommunications equipment.

ICG sells telecommunications equipment from compliant companies and manufacturers. This includes Axis cameras which publish a list of their TAA Compliant cameras. We are also able to procure compliant telecommunications equipment, from jacks and cabling to racks and patch panels.

If you would like more information on our product line please send us an email or give us a call!

The information provided is for informational purposes only. It is not legal advice. Contact your attorney if you require legal advice.

Click here to see the entire bill at Congress’ website.

Kathi BleaseSection 889 – Parts A and B – John S. McCain National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year 2019
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News Release: ICG is SBA 8(a) Certified

Boca Raton, FL.  Intranet Communications Group Inc. (ICG) announces its Certification by the Small Business Administration as a Disadvantaged Business in the 8(a) Business Development Program

June 16, 2020- Boca Raton, FL.  Intranet Communications Group Inc. (ICG) announces its Certification by the Small Business Administration as a Disadvantaged Business in the 8(a) Business Development Program.

Contract Highlights Include:

* Allows ICG to compete for 8(a) Contracts in the Federal Government space
* Certification is nationally recognized by all federal agencies
* ICG is part of a select group of Contractors. According to the Small Business Administration’s program, Dynamic Small Business Search (DSBS) database, there are approximately 5,893 current 8(a) firms

 

President, Kathi Blease stated, “ICG is pleased to announce the Small Business Administration’s approval of our 8(a) Certification. It has been a long journey to reach this point. We are proud of our company’s 22 year history and we look forward to the next chapter for ICG as a SBA 8(a) Certified Federal contractor. We anticipate growing our relationship with the many Government agencies we have supported over the years  in numerous agencies as both a prime and subcontractor.  ICG has completed Federal work across the United States for the Department of Defense, the Department of Homeland Security, Department of Interior, Department of Justice, Department of State, Department of Veterans Affairs, and Department of Health and Human Services.  Municipal work includes local city governments and universities in South Florida.

Craig Blease, V.P. of ICG and its in house Registered Communications Distribution Designer (RCDD), stated, “ICG is a dynamic organization focused on expanding our support of Federal customers. We look to build on our Exceptional CPARS rating which we received from the Air Force in 2019, and enhance our offerings as an IT integrator.’”

Intranet Communications Group Inc. (ICG) is an 8(a) certified, Women-Owned Small Business with over 22 years of experience in full-service telecommunications infrastructure.  ICG provides the network infrastructure for Local Area Networks (LAN), Campus Area Networks (CAN), Wireless Networks and turnkey CCTV integration. Our experience working with federal, state and municipal government crosses many disciplines, including correctional facilities, industrial plants, hospitals, air/marine stations, and numerous interior build outs of commercial office space.  Accepts government credit and purchase cards.

 

DUNS: 043403430 CAGE: 4LWZ4

GSA Contract#: GS-35F-0623W

Special Item Number (SIN): 132-8, 132-51

Media Contact:

Gerard Brandin, Marketing & Financial Associate
561-367-7276
gbrandin@icgconnects.com
www.icgconnects.com

Copyright © 2020 Intranet Communications Group Inc., All rights reserved.

Kathi BleaseNews Release: ICG is SBA 8(a) Certified
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Benefits of Shielded Cabling Versus Unshielded Cabling (STP vs UTP)

Electromagnetic Interference, or EMI, can cause a noisy signal. EMI is caused by other electronic devices. In a manufacturing facility or on a government campus you might have a great deal of EMI. This means that you may have degraded data transfer or no data transfer. This problem can be fixed by using Shielded Twisted-Pair Cabling (STP). STP cabling protects your Ethernet cables from EMI by covering them in a foil ‘shield’.

STP cabling can also “virtually eliminate external signal detection and interception.” This can be key for government networks and/or networks that require additional security. This is outlined by the BerkTek Whitepaper: Cabling for Secure Government Networks. (ICG is a BerkTek certified installer)

When selecting your cable prior to installation, keep in mind the requirements related to EMI shielding that will be needed for your project. When a project does not have significant EMI, you can use Unshielded Twisted-Pair (UTP) Cabling in its place as it is a lower cost point. STP is more expensive for multiple reasons. Material costs will be higher. The shielding makes the cabling more expensive. Additionally, the connectors and the patch panel must also be compatible with shielded cabling making them more expensive. Lastly, terminating STP cabling is more time consuming than terminating UTP cabling due to the extra steps in the process. Add in the bonding and grounding requirements and your labor time will likely increase as well.

When your project is completed, you can test for data loss via a network cabling tester. Make sure to ask for certified test results from your installer that show all your cables pass the required tests to be considered functional.

Kathi BleaseBenefits of Shielded Cabling Versus Unshielded Cabling (STP vs UTP)
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ICG – ISP and OSP Network Cabling (Video)

ICG is a network cabling and IP Security company. We’ve installed over 23,000 miles of cable and supported over 80,000 users across 14 states including both government and commercial accounts. Here is a day in the life of ICG.

Music: www.bensound.com

Kathi BleaseICG – ISP and OSP Network Cabling (Video)
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What is the difference between Cat 5e and Cat 6 cabling?

Cat 5e cabling is the same speed as Cat 6 cabling, 1000Mbps, at any distance over 55 meters. Under 55 meters, Cat 6 is 10x faster than Cat 5e at 10Gbps. For this reason, Cat 6 is often used for shorter runs to utilize its higher speeds.
Both are Ethernet cables, Twisted-Pair cables with four pairs of wires, but Cat 6 cabling has each wire protected from crosstalk (electromagnetic interference (EMI)) by a thicker sheath. It is also wound tighter than Cat 5e. Cat 6 is thus superior to Cat 5e as it is exposed to less crosstalk (which can weaken the signal).
The third benefit from Cat 6 over Cat 5e is increased bandwidth. Cat 6 operates at 250 Mhz while Cat 5e operates at 100 Mhz. This increased bandwidth allows more data to be transferred in a given amount of time.
Cat 5e is a useful cable but it has mostly outlived its useful life and is outdated. Cat 6 and especially Cat 6A are the new standard. Look for our next article on Cat 6 vs. Cat 6A.
Kathi BleaseWhat is the difference between Cat 5e and Cat 6 cabling?
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ICG is an Axis Gold Channel Partner

ICG is an Axis Gold Channel Partner and authorized reseller and installer. This means that ICG has two Axis Certified Professionals on staff in addition to their in-house BICSI Registered Communications Distribution Designer (RCDD). With the right professionals, ICG can help you design the most efficient and effective CCTV system within your budget- from cameras and encoders to an Network Video Recorder (NVR) and Video Management Software (VMS).

Whether you are transitioning your analog system to a digital VMS or installing a brand new digital Axis camera system, ICG can provide you with the know-how from beginning to end.

Axis is a best-in-class solution to your camera needs. They have been around since 1984 and invented the first network camera, first video encoder, and first network thermal camera. They are synonymous with quality and innovation.

As a Gold Channel Partner, ICG can resell and install Axis cameras nationwide. We are in South Florida but have performed work across the country with a focus on the Southeastern United States. Whether you are in the Southeast Florida Tri-County area or located across the United States, please contact us for a quote.

Kathi BleaseICG is an Axis Gold Channel Partner
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Why is our name ‘Intranet Communications Group’?

INTRANET is a Local Area Network (LAN). It involves having multiple computers on a closed network.

Our job is to build the LAN (Intranet) infrastructure for you, but also to allow you to connect to a Wide Area Network (WAN) such as the Internet.

This closed network infrastructure allows for more security, more reliable connections, and faster speeds.

COMMUNICATIONS means that computers and devices talk to each other over the network to transmit voice, data, video, and text. Connectivity between users is a key goal in all infrastructure upgrades.

GROUP refers to the trained and dedicated team we have at ICG.

Kathi BleaseWhy is our name ‘Intranet Communications Group’?
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CCTV

CCTV which can be known now as IP Video Security as the technology has moved away from analog and towards digital, Power over Ethernet (PoE) cameras. Since the cameras use PoE, they can be positioned more strategically and are not tied to an outlet. This flexibility can make a huge difference in terms of their placement.

CCTV allows for searchable records of footage, based on time, location, or other variables. These records can be searched by anyone with access on the network.

Many types of cameras interface with the CCTV network. There is the uni-directional camera, 360-degree cameras, and cameras that are remotely controlled so they can be pointed and adjusted as needed.

These cameras are higher resolution than legacy analog cameras allowing them to capture high granularity. They also have a higher frame rate to generate less choppy images.

CCTV is utilized as a security measure for both Inside Plant (ISP) and Outside Plant (OSP) applications depending upon the specific business or agency requirements.

Kathi BleaseCCTV
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What do ISP and OSP mean?

ISP stands for Inside Plant and OSP stands for Outside Plant. According to Building Industry Construction Service International (BICSI), OSP is any network infrastructure installed external to buildings. Our scope includes optical fiber cabling, balanced twisted-pair cabling, and support structures to link locations.

OSP cables are underground, direct-buried, or aerial.  ICG specializes in direct-buried which utilizes trenches, pedestals, and communication maintenance holes.

ISP refers to cable installed inside of the building. This includes everything from the patch panel, patch cord, and switch to the cables and jacks.

Each may require a different type of cable and a different method of installation. ISP utilizes wall and ceiling drops, while OSP will likely require trenching.

Kathi BleaseWhat do ISP and OSP mean?
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What is an As-Built?

As-builts are another name for the blueprints a structured cabling company delivers to a building or campus network manager after the completion of a project. This will provide the network owner with data ports marked, usually with a triangle, as well as any other relevant ports (ex. TV, A/V, etc.). This is important for multiple reasons. Initially, it lays out a plan for the network design that will be installed by the structured cabling company. This then provides the cabling company an accurate view of the project, allowing them to give a fair and accurate quote. As-builts are also important throughout construction. They are the guide showing the structured cabling company where to pull and where to terminate cables.

Regarding installation: occasionally on the as-built, the ports are not clearly labeled, the IDFs are not properly marked and it can be unclear which IDF the cables are supposed to be directed to. This can create problems for the estimator and the installer. They must be remedied prior to installation to ensure both an accurate quote and an installation that satisfies that the end-user’s requests.

Upon completion, cables are labeled, typically with their IDF and the switch and port numbers. These labels and the corresponding as-built are the road map for any future adds, moves, and changes.

The as-built is also very important for the end-user. Network Managers and IT Professionals need to know the layout of their network to be able to troubleshoot. This could be anything from a faulty cable, patch cord, or jack to an AP that has interference issues, or a camera that stopped transmitting. Even if a structured cabling company is needed to fix the issue, the end-user can hire a new company, unfamiliar with the network layout to fix any network issues. With the help of a properly labeled as-built, the newly hired firm can quickly identify and solve any problems. Without this tool, problems can cause more than just headaches for a Network Manager. These problems can lead to network downtime and loss of revenue for a firm.

Because of the as-built, your network is not dependent on any one person or one company to correct these problems. Despite not being part of the installation team, a properly trained professional will be able to perform network adds, moves, or changes.

Kathi BleaseWhat is an As-Built?
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