The National Security Agency is going to run a planned $1.5 billion data center in Utah that will serve as a support center for the government’s information security programs.
The exact mission and function of the data center is a bit unclear, however. The NSA’s core mission is to collect and analyze communications intelligence from around the world, but it also does some work supporting other intelligence agencies. The proposed new data center seems to be more in line with this latter function.
The data center will need 4,000-5,000 people to operate it, according to Federal Computer Week.
Glenn Gaffney, deputy director of national intelligence for
collection, announced the project Oct. 23 in Utah and he was joined by
elected officials from the state. “The new data center we are
announcing today will support the intelligence community’s mission in
providing foreign intelligence about cybersecurity threats,” Gaffney
Gaffney also said the center would also be used for information
assurance efforts related to Defense Department networks and to provide
technical assistance for the Homeland Security Department as it works
to secure the government’s civilian networks.
“By better understanding the threat, we will also learn valuable
lessons that will assist the private sector, dot-com and dot-org, in
securing their own networks,” Gaffney said. “This data center will be a
critical asset in each of these missions and we will accomplish this in
full compliance with the U.S. Constitution and federal law and while
observing strict guidelines that protect the privacy and civil
liberties of the American people.”
No exact timeline for the construction of the data center was announced.