Information Systems Security Assurance Management at Municipal Software Solutions, Inc.

Information Systems Security Assurance Management at Municipal Software Solutions, Inc.

Virginia Franke Kleist (West Virginia University, USA), Bonnie Morris (West Virginia University, USA) and James W. Denton (West Virginia University, USA)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-60960-200-0.ch006


Based on an actual company, this case focuses on Business Continuity Planning issues for a small but growing software company, Municipal Software Solutions, Inc. (MSS). The firm experienced a catastrophic fire which completely eliminated all aspects of the information systems infrastructure, including the software product code repository, the client access infrastructure, the hardware operations center, and the software design facility. Fortunately, no one was harmed, and the firm survived despite the fact that it did not have a formal disaster recovery plan in place. MSS was very lucky. The case can be used in conjunction with coverage of risk assessment concepts in the context of the availability component of systems reliability and trust of services management. Accordingly, it is appropriate for use in courses covering information systems security, accounting information systems, or IT audit.
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Municipal Software Systems, Inc.2

Case Introduction

Municipal Software Solutions, Inc., or MSS, is a small, privately held software firm located in Cleveland, OH that supplies tailor made financial and personnel management software for large and small municipal governments in the US and Canada. MSS, Inc. is the acknowledged leader in the municipal software market. Through hard work, price competition, and a superior product, competitors have been reduced from a field of many down to a field with only two strong contenders for dominance. MSS is currently in the lead in terms of market share in the US within this niche industry. MSS revenues range from $2 million to $4 million annually, and the company employs a staff of 21. The firm has evolved over a twenty five year time period from its original inception as a systems consulting business, to a hardware solutions provider, to a LAN networking firm in the early ‘90s, but has settled into the specialized municipal market software engineering role for well over a decade. This case discusses the firm’s business strategy, their operations and organizational structure.

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