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At Bat with Ed Eisenstein

Jul 23, 2021 | At Bat With The Board

Ed Eisenstein is the CEO and Founder of United Network Associates in Farmingdale. He has 30 years in IT enterprise management, eight as Commissioner of IT for Nassau County (2010 to 2018), where he achieved significant operational improvements in governmental organization. At UNA he manages IT systems as a Fractional CIO with expertise in strategic roadmapping and execution. He is also one of the Co-chairs of the LISTnet CIO Group. Learn more at his website https://www.unatechnical.com/.

When did you know that you wanted to be in technology or work in technology?
When I was a little kid, maybe 8 or 9 years old. It was the beginning of technology and I was in awe about what I was seeing developing.

How did you go from working in the industry to running your own company?
I always thought I could do better faster and stronger and challenge the people I worked with. I had confidence in myself that I could perform what I was thinking.

When did you first hear about LISTNet?
I was at the grand opening of the Great River Office [the Long Island Tech Center] during Y2K and Peter [Goldsmith] was very, very nice to me and treated me, unlike any other businessperson.

What made you stay and get involved all these years?
Because of the way Peter treated me and made me feel. And obviously, I got business out of it.

You have your headquarter in Farmingdale, but you have a satellite office here in the Digital Ballpark, what are some of the benefits do you see from having this office here?
I believe and have a strong sense that there should be a convergence of technologies on Long Island. A center where technology companies collaborate and consolidate and work for a bigger picture is very important for our region. I’m part of that and that’s one of the main factors why I’m there. The other part is to collaborate with people in the center and work together. Configure deals by combining multiple small vendors.

We’re glad to have you here! You’re one of the Co-chairs of the LISTnet CIO group. What do you think is on CIO’s minds lately?
Compliance and cybersecurity. Meaning also the political or public fallout from that, what the newspapers say. Compliance and what can happen if you get hacked.

Your company helps other companies manage their IT infrastructure and networks. What do you think companies should be thinking about for the future?
Having a cohesive plan about how to structure their environment, especially around security. There’s a lot of remote workers, so really a sense of security. In the world of compliance, they suggest that every company has a security officer, so I do recommend that somebody in the C Class or management take on that role if they can’t afford the security officer and really concentrate on the next one to two years around ransomware training and testing of users, which is still the biggest problem created in America, users letting the bad guy in.

What are some of the things you’re excited about for the coming year or for the future?
Blockchain technology and being able to increase transactions and reliability through blockchain, which leads to Web 3.0. I think a significant upgrade of technologies right in front of us, includes blockchain and Web 3.0. Personally, I’m also excited about E-bikes, but that’s a separate story.

Is there anything else you want to add or something you would want people to know?
I think it’s important for technologists to come together on Long Island and really attempt to be one. Like Tech Day [an event LISTnet did with Nassau County] the convergence between local government, technology, and towns. It’s so important for this region and I’m glad to be part of it. And that’s the bigger picture. What can we all do to create a bigger technology force as a group on Long Island?