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City considers Data Cave for digital storage

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The city of Columbus is considering moving its computer servers as a way to save taxpayer dollars.

Data Cave may provide the city’s website, email, payroll and other applications. The local data center already hosts Bartholomew County government’s information technology equipment.

Moving the city’s IT infrastructure to Data Cave will save money, according to Sean O’Leary, the city’s former community information technology executive.

Columbus would have had to soon spend about $50,000 to upgrade equipment and building improvements if the IT center remained at City Hall, O’Leary said. Instead, the city will pay about $800 a month to have Data Cave as its host, he said.

City equipment moved to Data Cave is “mission critical,” according to O’Leary, designed to keep systems operational and secure, particularly in severe weather when access to city information and services becomes critical.

Data Cave is on 21 acres of fenced, private property in Columbus that is monitored 24 hours a day, said Ben Hatton, Data Cave marketing manager.

Data Cave monitors and limits access into the building, part of its attractiveness to core customers, which include government agencies, banks and health care providers.

The Data Cave building is designed to withstand up to 200 mph winds, according to Hatton, and has redundant infrastructure to back up critical data for its customers.

Another consideration in talking with Data Cave was that Bartholomew County already was using the facility successfully.

“In the end, it really was a no-brainer for us,” O’Leary said.

Government entities find the Data Cave concept attractive because of the no-worries aspect, Hatton said.

The company said in a news release that it has provided 100 percent uptime since opening in January 2010. City officials can talk to someone at Data Cave in the middle of the night if necessary, O’Leary said, an important consideration in emergencies.

O’Leary recently took a job with Cummins Inc. as a project manager.

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