A facility where computers and components connected to the computers are physically placed is called a data center. A data center consists of a power supply backup, connections for data communications, climate controls and security equipment. A Data center is required for a business which relies upon a network of computers and applications (web based). Therefore many companies construct data centers within their building. However, some companies who work on composite business jobs and are heavily reliant on technology choose to contract out their internet related communications to a service provider. The service provider also provides them with a data center.
This has many benefits:
• Superior value with controlled hosting opportunities
• Enhanced utilization of time and assets
• Business stability and fast reaction in catastrophe revival conditions
• Extra value added features
The Following Steps should be Carried out when Setting up a Data Center:
Procurement of a Data Center
After making the decision to contract out the requirements for a data center and hosting, search for a vendor with experience and a good reputation. There are many factors to consider when searching for a vendor for your data center. The most important factor is the data center. Carefully evaluate the data center and whether it is according to the requirements and needs of your organization and whether it has the further capacity to upgrade in the future. See the guidelines below to help you understand your requirements for a data center:
- First of all recognize your requirements. Many people do not consider this logically and search for data centers contractors or service providers without knowing their actual needs. Your search should be according to your requirements. For example if your company has an online business in which numerous daily transactions take place, then you will require a data center with the capacity to handle these transactions accordingly. Therefore keep in mind the requirements of the company while meeting the service provider.
- Secondly, thoroughly inspect the data centers for the facilities available and note the shortcomings as per your requirements. Good data centers have some necessary physical qualities and characteristics. Generally data centers consist of a large or small building with rows of servers in cabinets, communication cables and data storage devices or equipment. The facility for backup power is very important and cannot be ignored in the selection of data centers. At least one backup power facility in the form of UPS (Uninterrupted Power Supply) or a diesel generator should be available. The electrical system should be in good condition with duplication to prevent any kind of failure. The internal climate of the data centers is very crucial. The data centers should have the facility of an air conditioning system to control the temperature and humidity within the specified limits. The temperature limit is 20 to 25 degrees Celsius and the humidity limit is 40 % to 50%.
- Physical security is another important factor to look for. Data Centers should be safe and sound in all aspects. Physical access to the data centers accessories should be limited to the authorized staff. Moreover the data centers should have the facility of security cameras with a CCTV control room. Security guards should be deployed for 24 hours a day to secure the area.
- The last factor is the service quality of the data centers provider or vendor. We have discussed the most important ones like backup power supply, environment control, and security but the most important of all is the overall package and the hosting solutions offered by the service provider. Meet with many vendors to choose the best services which also have extra value added services.
Outsourced Data Center Problems
Once your company has outsourced the data center, you will have to face the difficulties of protecting data and data auditing. Actually data is the most precious and valuable asset of a company. Especially when this data is online, data loss by any means is always possible. This data loss can occur due to the following reasons:
1. Human error
3. Cyber attack
This data loss can be prevented through data center auditing. Data Center auditing is a very good defensive strategy for preventing data loss. Organizations mostly depend on their data for business, therefore data loss means business loss. Below are some ways to prevent data loss though data center auditing:
- The risk of online data loss can be reduced considerably through proactive protection. Proper and extensive documentation of business by organizations can greatly reduce their loss.
- An internal auditor can be deployed to audit the data to ensure accountability, and the security of the data will not be compromised.
- The process of audit also lessens risk. It also provides transparent access to any transactional or structural changes. By auditing the recovery of data loss is easy, fast and economical.
- This also provides the administrator with the facility of watching and monitoring online data activities, although data loss can be prevented through data center auditing.
- The data auditing process also discourages thieves, limits misuse and prevent employees from even thinking of wrongdoing.
Below are some effective key points to Data Center Auditing:
- Always plan according to future requirements of the business.
- Work out an agile system that can immediately adjust to business alteration without difficulty.
- Ensure that the data center auditing System is not connected with other IT systems.
- The responsibility of auditing should be assigned to a person who is impartial and has no connection with other employees.
- Take your time to classify and record all electronic data files, both from in-house and outside, together with instant messages and email, lists of customers, financial records and bank records, files related to the web and designing, directories, legal records, personnel records, video, audio and other media.
- While conducting a thorough study of the data center, always define the importance, role, and sensitivity of each file.
- The online data should be accessible for read only purposes. This will diminish the chances of alteration of the data. The data center auditing System should also have the facility to easily examine and find the data, generate reports, evaluate trends and find out the paths of transactions.
- The average evaluation of file usage will be done by the administrators once the system has been online for some time. This will ultimately help to stop inadvertent use and disclosure.
You can also keep up to date with current trends and technology by visiting Data Center Talk where we keep you informed on important changes as they occur.