International support next step to a NZ data vault
From The Digital Agenda
2 October 2001
International support the next step to a New Zealand data vault
The next step towards making New Zealand an international data security hub is about to take place with two of the main proponents, technology consultant Gary Connolly of The Digital Agenda, and Arjen DeLandgraaf, the New Zealand representative (telecommunications and IT) of NZPECC (New Zealand Pacific Economic Co-operation Council), pitching the idea to APEC.
"We are already seeing a great deal of enthusiasm for the idea here in New Zealand and we now want to start talking with possible international partners, " says Mr Connolly, whose company is backed by Telecom-owned Advanced Solutions.
"Both Arjen DeLandgraaf and I believe that New Zealand is uniquely positioned to implement secure, encrypted data centres for governments and private enterprise from around the world," says Mr Connolly.
"In addition we want to get the message across that New Zealand is a uniquely safe place to conduct ebusiness. This is because New Zealand is not seen as an obvious target either by hackers or terrorists, it has no neighbours, and is geographically quite isolated. Also, we can set up the data vault system in this country more economically than anywhere else in the world.
"And, with the renewed focus on top line security following September 11, we need to move as fast as we can to make all concerned aware of the opportunity to set up a Swiss Bank-type security vault in this country."
Code named 'Project Rock', Mr Connolly says the intention is to locate at least five secure data sites away from New Zealand's main CBDs, with the first centre up and running by the end of the year.
According to Mr Connolly, those who are already backing the formation of the data centres include the Ministry of Defence and the New Zealand Defence Force, the University of Auckland, Massey University, biotechnology company Neuronz, Co-Logic, eSecureIT, Telecom New Zealand and Telecom international, and Top Energy.
Others who have expressed interest in the project are the Ministry of Economic Development, Otago University and Mighty River Power.
Some idea of the scale of storage capacity contemplated can be deduced from the fact that the sixth largest US bank has a database of 500-600 terrabytes. The combined storage capacity of the data centres will be able to handle the total databases of the top 12 banks in the United States.
Mr Connolly says to help facilitate international business participation, call centres will be attached to each of the data centres. "Data storage could become one of New Zealand's biggest export businesses," he says.
Prepared for The Digital Agenda by Core Communications.
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