Kakao promises to invest in multi-layer server redundancy
Kakao will triple its budget for service stabilization over the next five years to get its systems up to industry standard to prevent a repeat of the October server-farm debacle, which took most of the company’s services down for127 hours.
The exact amount of the investment was not disclosed.
On Wednesday, Kakao held an online briefing to discuss its plan to enhance service stability.
The presentation came a month and a half after a fire at an SK C&C data center in Pangyo, Gyeonggi led to the dramatic service breakdown. As Kakao had been relying on the SK C&C center for its core functions, its services went down for 127 hours and 30 minutes.
Kakao promised to establish a disaster recovery committee and promote one of its engineering branches to operate directly under the CEO. The new engineering organization will oversee the service stabilization.
“For the next five years, Kakao will invest triple the amount of money spent over the past five years to realize our improvement plan,” said Ko Woo-chan, co-head of Kakao’s task force for preventive measures, during the online conference. Ko will lead the upcoming engineering group that will spearhead the overall system stabilization.
Kakao aims to set up a multi-layered backup system for its data centers.
The disaster recovery system will have at least a three-layered backup system that would involve three data centers or more, the company explained. Kakao is also considering a separate data center dedicated to crucial services, such as the message sending function for KakaoTalk messenger.
It will also establish a multi-layered backup system for its operation control system.
During the service outage in October, Kakao failed to switch on its backup system though it had one because the authorization to start the backup system could be activated only through the servers in the SK C&C center.
The company is building a 460-billion-won ($348.3-million) data center in Ansan, Gyeonggi. The Ansan data center “will have a dual system for the power supply, cooling and network communication,” according to Ko.
At the Ansan data center, the battery room, which caught fire in the October incident, will be separate from the backup power supply, an uninterruptible power supply (UPS), with an enhanced fire control system.
At the SK C&C data center, the power supply was cut along with the backup power supply during the fire because the UPS system was in the same room as the batteries that caught fire.
The Ansan data center is scheduled for completion in 2024, and Kakao plans to begin construction of another data center in Siheung, Gyeonggi, that year.
“We will always bear in mind that stabilizing Kakao’s services is our foremost priority and social responsibility to uphold,” said former Kakao co-CEO Namkoong Whon. Namkoong has been serving as the co-head of the task force for preventive measures since his resignation on Oct. 19.
A user compensation plan was not discussed during the conference. No questions were taken.
Kakao held a meeting for the user compensation plan on Dec. 1, following the first meeting on Nov. 22. A total of 105,116 damage reports were made from Oct. 19 to Nov. 6, with 17 percent of them involving paid services.
The Ministry of Science and ICT completed its probe into the Kakao service outage and demanded the company come up with a data redundancy system, a disaster plan and a user compensation plan on Tuesday.
BY SHIN HA-NEE [firstname.lastname@example.org]