With the advent of more advanced internet technologies, there is an increasing number of transactions that are now done via the internet.
As millions of people are now turning to the internet for their purchases and other business transactions, and in an era when mobile purchases on smartphones and tablets are predicted to achieve a growth of 73% to $11.6 billion in the U.S. this year, it’s no surprise that security has become a necessary obsession with businesses or organizations with dealing in the internet.
According to the market researcher Gartner, there are more than half of the world’s 13,000 large data centers and are located in the United States.
Gartner had also estimated $US22 billion will be spent towards the building of new centers worldwide this year, after growth popped during the US recession.
With the increasing popularity of cloud computing, tablets and smartphones, data centers are also getting increasingly in vogue as demand for digital data explodes.
Among the large technology companies that built their data centers in rural areas to save on land and power are Google, Facebook and Apple.
However, with the increasing popularity of cloud computing, tablets and smartphones among businesses and organizations comes also the increasing incidence of internet hacking.
With this in mind, it is no wonder internet security has also become a necessary obsession among businesses as well in the US Department of State with regards to the processing of American visa, ESTA America and other e-visas.
The Department has always taken the security of all Personally Identifiable Information (PII) very seriously. They have been known to have taken all the necessary precautions to maintain the security, confidentiality, and integrity of the information they collect at their website like in their USA visa application online system.
The Department has been known to use technical controls to secure the information they’ve collected online including, but not limited to: Secure Socket Layer (SSL), Encryption, Firewalls, and Password protections. They also employ external access safeguards in order to identify and prevent unauthorized access by outsiders that attempt to “hack” into, or cause harm to, the information contained in their systems.
This situation is also true at Visa’s top-secret Operations Center East (OCE) – its biggest, newest and most advanced U.S. data center.
Though the 8-acre data center facility looks like any other industrial park in a sleepy US suburb; however, the data center resembles a fortress, with hundreds of cameras and a crack team of former military personnel.
The data center is said to boast of hydraulic bollards beneath the road leading to the OCE, which can quickly be raised to stop an intruding car going 50 mph. The center is also said to have the capacity to withstand earthquakes and hurricane-force winds of up to 170 mph. There is also the presence of a 1.5-million-gallon storage tank to cool the system as well as onsite diesel generators that have enough power, in the event of an outage, to keep the center running for nine days.
A “Tier 4″ center - a certification from data center research organization Uptime Institute, requiring a backup for every mainframe, air conditioner and battery - OCE is home to130 workers who are entrusted with the arduous task of keeping hackers out and the network up.
The company says that Visa’s core-transaction network is private and immune from Internet dangers such as denial-of-service attacks by the likes of Anonymous