Disaster Recovery Solutions Are Essential to Securing the Backbone of Smart Cities
According to Gartner, the technology research and advisory firm, this year, an estimated 2.3 billion connected things will be used in smart cities, which includes major metro areas such as New York, London and Tokyo. That projection represents a 42 percent increase in the number of connected devices since 2016.
Rapid urbanization has mandated the need for smart city solutions. Experts worldwide point out that smart cities will be the future enablers in accelerating economic growth and improving the quality of life of metropolitan citizens. As we will learn later in this blog, because colocation facilities and data centers provide the backbone of smart city infrastructure, having viable disaster recovery solutions in place will become essential not only to smart, public services but for maintaining public health and safety.
Smart cities rely on interconnected devices to streamline and improve city services based on rich, real-time data. These systems combine hardware, software and geospatial analytics to enhance municipal services and improve an area’s livability. IoT-enabled sensors, for example, can reduce the energy expended in street lights or regulate the flow of water to better preserve resources.
But with the global IoT footprint expected to surpass 50 billion connected devices by 2020, smart cities will need to strengthen disaster recovery methods for both unexpected natural and man-made incidents that would adversely impact their ability to rely on accurate data to properly function. While we don’t like to think about it, some of the world’s smart cities are in low-lying coastal areas that are prone weather-related emergencies, such as flooding, or are situated on grids whose history suggests the possibility of future outages. Also, unfortunately, there is the ever-present threat of cyberattack and the destruction or sabotage of physical infrastructure.
To look at but one real world scenario, if hackers targeted a smart city’s Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition (SCADA) system, which some cyber defense experts claim are susceptible to intrusions due to poor security protocols, they could potentially shut down multiple city services from a single entry point and threaten public health and safety.
For this reason, and as more and more cities around the world adopt smart initiatives, it becomes mission-critical to make data security a priority. Just as public utilities such as power, gas and water are physically protected and secure, smart city planners need to secure data by implementing failover and backup in all systems and networks extending to the data centers that form the key infrastructure for providing IoT-enabled services. Disaster Recovery preparedness, which starts with accessible data backup, is the foundation of business and smart city continuity.
Telehouse New York Teleport, our primary, dedicated Business Continuity Recovery site, comprises 162,000 square feet of colocation space and is one of the few data centers in the New York metro region with ample office area where essential personnel can be relocated during an adverse event. Located just 17 miles from Manhattan in a 100-acre office park on Staten Island, its concrete and steel structure was built to withstand 125-mile-per-hour winds. Additionally, because it sits on a dry topographic prominence above shore, Telehouse New York Teleport is not located in a flood zone and is afforded natural protection from high water surges.
This Telehouse Disaster Recovery data center provides customers with an ultra-secure, power-protected infrastructure that provides the resources and support necessary to restore smart city data, IT systems and management controls during an unanticipated man-made or natural catastrophe.
Telehouse will be available to discuss disaster recovery as it relates to smart cities at several upcoming events. The Telehouse team will be attending NANOG 70 Hackathon, taking place June 4 in Bellevue, Washington, the International Conference on Digital Government Research, taking place June 7-10 at the College of Staten Island, as well as NYSCIO 2017, taking place July 12-14 in Clayton, New York.
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