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East coast data centers are metaphorically boarding up windows and doors in preparation for the worst of Hurricane Sandy.
During times of natural disaster, the safety of individuals is prioritized over the maintenance of buildings or services. And while that is exactly how it should be, keeping certain technology services available during times of disaster can be the difference between life and death for some. If a cell tower goes down, that limits how people in that area can contact emergency services.
While website uptime isn’t the difference between life and death by any stretch, companies would like to limit their losses during catastrophes, including limiting their downtime. That’s why data centers on the east coast have been reinforcing their security since the first word of Sandy came down the pipeline.
For example, Verizon’s Terremark group (which focuses on enterprise IT solutions) went into overdrive at its Miami site last week as the hurricane began its approach. As the storm has moved up the coast, Terremark sites along the way have done the same, including a location in New York and Culpepper, VA. The group has been increasing redundancy and battening down the hatches to prevent outages to its systems during the storm.
Terremark spokesperson Xavier Gonzalez said, “From our perspective, this is part of doing business – we build data centers with these situations in mind. And from the cloud computing perspective, people have to remember that the cloud lives in data centers.
Internap is also doing what it can to put its Emergency Action plan into place for its New York and Boston data centers. Each data center has customized plans which require testing emergency systems, topping fuel supplies, and making sure food and water are on-site for the personnel that stay in the data centers during the storm.
Bill Brown, VP of data center operations said, “Each facility has enough fuel to run on generators for multiple days and we have already engaged our fuel suppliers for on-call assistance, if needed. We also added more engineers and technical support staff at each data center for the duration of the storm to monitor and ensure infrastructure availability and provide ‘remote hands service’ for customers so they do not have to travel to the data center.”
One question mark during all of this will certainly be Amazon Web Services. The product has already had major east coast outages this year, and has lost business because of it. While some of the events earlier this year were weather related, some AWS outages weren’t weather related at all.
Some cloud providers are hedging their east coast bets and letting customers move data to other facilities in their cloud network. One such provider is Nirvanix, which has a data center based in New Jersey. The company is providing the switch either temporarily or permanently (depending on the customer’s preference) for no charge.
At the time of writing this article, Sandy was gusting up to 70 miles per hour in New Jersey and ocean waves were between 6 and 11 feet. The bottom line? Don’t wait around to protect any data on the east coast. Move your data as quickly as possible to a stable climate with little to no risk of physical danger.
Take a tour of the Fibernet data center today to see our top of the line security, as well as our outstanding power and network redundancy to protect all of our clients in case of a natural disaster.