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Cyber-attack prevention is obviously a huge part of maintaining data center security. But online ambushes aren’t the only dangers data center operators must worry about. Physical threats like heat, humidity and airborne contaminants cause hardware to malfunction and lead to costly downtime.
Depending on the size of the enterprise, data centers can be small enough to fit in a server room, while others fill a floor of a building. The largest data centers are groups of buildings that occupy millions of square feet.
As of January 2022, there were 2,751 large data centers in the United States, and Loudoun County, Virginia, houses the world’s largest concentration of facilities, with more than 25 million square feet currently in operation and millions more in development. That’s followed by 484 data centers located in Germany, 458 in the UK, 447 in China and 324 in Canada.
Results from a recent survey note that 69% of data center owners and operators reported experiencing some form of downtime in the past three years, with half of those incidents causing substantial financial, operational and reputational damage. In addition, 62% of the downtime incidents classified as significant, serious or severe, costing more than $100,000, while 15% of these events cost over $1 million.