Gov’t steps in to ensure data center safety
The ICT ministry will make data centers subject to the government’s disaster management system and establish an organization for digital risk control following the meltdown of Kakao services caused by a fire at a data center on Oct. 15.
On Friday, the Ministry of Science and ICT announced the measures to prevent IT service outages in a release.
A center that oversees disaster prevention and response for digital infrastructure will be established. The ministry will also include private data centers as facilities for governmental disaster management, meaning they will be subject to regular inspections and safety drills.
The regulations will mostly apply to large companies, not small- and mid-sized companies, added the ministry.
The ICT ministry and National Fire Agency plan nationwide safety inspections of data centers and other kinds of network infrastructure. A team of experts will be organized to come up with measures to improve the safety of data centers.
In the longer term, the ministry will push for technology development to enhance the stability and safety of IT systems, such as all-solid-state batteries — which has fewer risks of fire — and satellite internet connections in case of emergencies.
On Oct. 15, Kakao servers were knocked out as a result of a fire at the SK C&C data center in Pangyo. The messenger service and services offered by related companies were unavailable, degraded or intermittent anywhere from 10 hours to two days as backup systems failed to kick in.
Though emergency restoration of the power system at the data center has been completed, SK C&C says it may take up to three weeks for the emergency power supply system to be fully restored, according to the ministry.
Kakao and Naver may face glitches in their services until then.
The ICT ministry on Friday held an emergency meeting with IT service companies including Google, Netflix, Meta Platforms, Woowa Brothers, Daangn Market and Amazon Web Services to discuss safety measures for data centers.
“The recent accident reminded us how much influence digital services have on people’s everyday lives, and how big a social responsibility the service providers hold,” said Park Yun-kyu, the second vice minister of Science and ICT.
BY SHIN HA-NEE [firstname.lastname@example.org]