Should my data center be located on our corporate campus?

It's time for a new data center, but where to put it? Should the facility be located on the corporate campus or isolated somewhere else?

Your current data center does not meet your existing and future capacity, operations and growth needs -- you have to move into the new facility. It is desirable to have the company data center separate from corporate headquarters

But sometimes it can not be avoided. If in fact your existing data center does meet current and future growth requirements, then I would recommend that you stay, or perhaps utilize the site as a disaster recovery location (if you do not already have one).

The following factors need to be reviewed when making your location decision:
1. Where is the corporate headquarters located?
2. What are the demographics of the area?
3. What modes of transportation are nearby?
4. What climate risks exist (earthquake, flooding, tornado, hurricanes, wildfires)?
5. Has your company received threats or harassment in the past?
6. Does your existing data center meet what is required for current data center security construction practices (proper property line set-back, site hardening, controlled access to site or proper blast mitigation components such as laminated windows, hardened wall construction and so on)? If not, what will it cost to bring your current data center up to speed? Will it be cheaper to factor in these items into the design of the new data center?
7. What type of security staff coverage will be required if the data center is separate from headquarters? Have you factored in the cost of additional security staff if your data center is separate? Is this within your budget?
8. Can existing security at the headquarters building monitor a separate data center with technology (security system, digital video) and then provide remote response if an event occurs?

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Thor A. Mollung, CHSII, Managing Director, Security Consultant, has over 20 years of experience in the industrial security industry with companies such as Fidelity Investments, Mellon Bank and State Street Corporation. Mollung is a member in good standing of the American Society for Industrial Security (ASIS-International), the National Fire Protection Association International (NFPAI), and the American College of Forensic Examiners Institute.

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