The Ontario Energy Board (OEB) is charged with regulating a large, complex and dynamic industry. It relies heavily on information and information technology to manage its processes, make regulatory decisions, stay on top of the energy market in Ontario, and disseminate information about the market to all its stakeholders - the Ministry of Energy, market participants, consumers and interested parties and other interested parties.
The OEB is planning to replace the current Cisco network switches (core & access) and Cisco WAN router with the latest technology from Cisco or equivalent technology. The OEB recognizes the strategic importance of this infrastructure to fulfilling its objectives, and is committed to making a commensurate long-term investment in maintaining and developing this infrastructure in accordance with its requirements. These updates were approved as part of the OEB’s 2018/2019 IT Plan.
Current OEB Environment:
The current OEB IT infrastructure backbone is built on the Cisco system, HP and Citrix technologies & products. See below:
- Cisco ASA Firewalls with Firepower - Provides network visibility and control, Intrusion prevention system (IPS), threats and advance malware protection
- Cisco DUO (MFA) - Provide a second factor of authentication for OEB Staff and contractors to access any OEB resources (Servers, applications, databases) remotely
- Cisco L2 (Access) and L3 (Core) Switches - Provides connectivity to all the devices on a Local Area Network
- Cisco WAN Routers - Provide connectivity to Internet
- Cisco Wireless System - Provide WiFi connectivity to all the OEB staff, contractors and guests.
- HPE BladeSystem Chassis - Holds up to 16 server blades and provides connectivity to network and storage interconnects (up to 4 redundant interconnect I/O fabrics (10GB Fibre Channel)
- HP Fibre Switches - Provides FC connectivity to storage and servers via a high-speed network of interconnected fibre channel switches
- HP Storage (SAN) - Provides block-level storage to all the servers that are connected through HP SAN
- Citrix Netscaler - Provide single sign-on across all applications weather in datacenter, in a cloud or delivered as SaaS. It allows OEB to access specific apps from a single URL
- Citrix XenApp - Provide application virtualization that delivers centrally hosted windows applications to local devices without the necessity of installing them
The project objective is to upgrade the current OEB’s network infrastructure (WAN router, L3 Core Switches and L2 Access Switches) to meet current and future business needs, including:
Full details are provided in the RFP document which is available only through MERX at www.merx.com or 1-800-964-6379, MERX reference number 144056.
- Agile and responsive to business requirements
- Cloud based applications (Azure, AWS, office365, etc.)
- Increasing network reliability and speed
- Merging Voice and Data networks into one shared infrastructure that will improve resilience, support, speed and future-proofing
- Minimizing single points of failure
- Providing a better, more secure network experience
- Providing a better user bandwidth experience
- Providing needed new services that currently cannot be implemented due to outdated infrastructure components
- Reducing maintenance cost
- Reducing total operating costs
- Replacing out of support equipment
- Security and encryption for every kind of traffic and data