As organizations move from on-premises data centers to cloud environments, choosing the right cloud services provider is vital. When evaluating potential providers, the certifications that they hold are an important consideration.
These certifications measure how well a data center can meet the needs of an organization. Industry standards like those from the Telecommunications Industry Association (TIA) and the Uptime Institute exist to assist in the design, construction and maintenance of data centers. This is important to businesses who rely on data center facilities to provide shared access to critical applications and data.
Data center ownership varies from wholly owned and managed by a company to one owned and operated by a Managed Service Provider. When considering using a managed service, it’s important to understand what industry data center ratings mean and how data center audit processes work. Data center certifications like the TIA ANSI/TIA-942-B specification and Uptime Institute certifications outline requirements for data center architecture elements including:
For each of these components, a standard may define varying rating levels that a data center service provider may work to achieve. Within both the ANSI/TIA-942 and UI specifications, four different data center rating levels are defined as Tiers 1-4.
Tiers 1 and 2 are primarily intended for services providing off-site data storage without real-time data access, while Tiers 3 and 4 provide built-in redundancies designed to ensure real-time access to mission-critical services.
Tier 1 and 2 are mainly used for companies who do not want real time access to their data, are mainly used for off-site storage, while Tiers 3 and 4 have built-in redundancies to ensure real time access to mission critical services.
The four Tiers have the following requirements:
While TIA and UI certifications have certain similarities, they also have their differences. When evaluating the certifications that a data center services provider holds, consider the following questions:
UI and TIA are not the only certifications governing data center operations, especially if you’re considering outsourcing to a cloud service provider. Some other certifications that you may want to look for include:
When evaluating a data center service provider, data center security should also be a primary consideration. Data center security includes physical security (camera, access controls etc.) and digital security (data and the IT infrastructure). Additionally, as organizations are moving on-premises IT systems to cloud service providers, cloud infrastructures, cloud data storage and cloud applications, it’s important to maintain security during the migration.
Check Point is a trusted partner and can help with any of your data center needs. To learn more about how Check Point can help, you’re welcome to contact us.